Monday, February 17, 2014

Who Knew? Dedicated to Love INC

“The woman I was yesterday, introduced me to the woman I am today; which makes me very excited about meeting the woman I will become tomorrow. ”
― Poetic Evolution

Isn't life grand, just when we think we are pretty cool God puts us in a pot and turns up the heat! We never know when it's going to happen either, no outsmarting our creator!
I do volunteer work for a non profit in my area called Love INC  (Love in the Name of Christ). They offer a plethora of wonderful things to Black Hills area residents who struggle financially or otherwise. They welcome volunteers with big smiles, even bigger hearts and some time to spare. For more information about them look here.
On Thursday evenings Life INC is in full swing. Area churches and others are encouraged to volunteer their time, energy, groceries and child care skills to assure a success. A hot meal is prepared and offered prior to a variety of classes relating to child care, finances and pulling your life together in general.
I was volunteering in the kitchen one evening last fall when one of the staff told me I was welcome and encouraged to sign up for a class if I wanted. I looked over the selection and decided on a course called Jobs for Life.
My three years of college didn't prepare me for what I am learning here. The instructors and mentors are wonderful. The text/work book for the class says "The Journey is the reward" on its cover and that is a fact! I have met some truly magnificent people there and as I feel my own growth, I am also able to observe the growth in others.
After class lets out those interested typically go somewhere for coffee. It was during one such outing that one of the instructors decided without my knowledge, to video me with her iPhone while I was talking. For me to say that I wasn't prepared to see myself like that is an understatement.

Whoa! What an eye opener. Like I said previously, just when we think we are pretty cool....the Lord is up there working in his mysterious ways!
This is not a class for the faint of heart or anyone who doesn't welcome a crash
course in constructive criticism because you get it all there, along with a plentiful helping of humble pie  and a pride buster thrown in for good measure. I highly recommend it, if you think you can handle it.
What a tremendous service this class is. With the proper attitude and a great big smile you can learn a great deal from it. Thank you Jesus for your trickery! How in the world can we be annoyed when our blessed savior opens our eyes?
If you are inclined to have a pity party after you have been severely humiliated I strongly suggest you make yourself a pan of brownies and get over yourself.
A bite or two of these bad boys will expedite your recovery...all is not lost!

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Smarts vs. Passion

I was so thrilled when I found this article, it is one of the closest descriptions of myself I have ever read...

There are smart people and there are passionate people. Smart people show up, do good work, and then go home. Passionate people can’t help but show up early, drive everyone crazy with ideas, suggestions, and numerous attempts at solutions that result in both success and failure. They stay late, and they annoy the smart people because they make the smart people look lazy. When they fall down, they can’t help but get back up and try again. Smart people annoy the passionate people because the smart people are just trying to get the A. Passionate people don’t care about the grade, they care about learning something, and being better.
Smart is boring, and easy, for the smart ones. Smart is safe and smart is average.
Passion is life, and risk, and adventure, and unpaved roads, and massive fulfillment.
Written  By Whitney on January 30, 2014
I am a very passionate person.

Being so has gotten me in trouble, caused me to loose sleep, caused me to annoy the holy hell out of several million other people and caused me to cry myself into a stupor many times.
On one hand it is the most frustrating way to be and on the other hand, I wouldn't change it about myself if I could. Being passionate has pushed me to complete things that I would have otherwise walked away from. Being passionate has kept me caring for people who I probably should have forgotten long ago and being passionate gives me tenacity.

I am passionate about many things...

1. My Savior. How can I not be? Just reflecting on that very word...savior... brings alive a passion within me like no other. noun 1. a person who saves, rescues, or delivers, 2. the savior of the country. 3.a title of God, especially of Christ.

2.  Development & Writing are my favorite outlets and with any luck, they are skills and passions that will somehow manifest themselves into a career of sorts. These are my favorite go to-s for cold snowy days and sleepless nights. Taking bits and pieces from here and there and putting them together in an enormous collaboration that hopefully, prayerfully will result in the precise goal I am seeking. I used to thrive on My Space...remember that thing? I had more fun fitting the codes for teeny frogs into tiny spaces and rattling on about whatever I liked best at the moment. I miss everyone is on  Face Book, and all that true creativity is not an option. Instead of creativity there are mindless posters and so many guidelines and rules it doesn't fulfill that same desire to be creative that My Space did. Sorry Face Book, I hate to break it to you, but even my eighty nine year old mother called it "in your face" and she wasn't far off. People can't seem to calmly scroll down their home page without jumping in somewhere they have no business and attacking their so called 'friend' for offering an opinion that differs from theirs...God forbid! Discovering and chatting with friends, both old and new is their redeeming grace. 

3. Cooking is the first of my two favorite tangible ways to creatively express a passion. I am a very particular eater. I don't use cake mixes nor do I eat meals from the frozen food section of the grocery store.    I want my meals to be made from real food. I see people in the grocery stores loading up on helper this and helper that, frozen this and frozen that and I am thrilled that those products are available for those who hate the kitchen and hate cooking, but that is not me, I love it all! I am actually a small scale Martha Stewart wanna be, I enjoy all things kitchen, even cleaning it....yes..I said cleaning it. When you get the kitchen all cleaned up and sparkling, the heavenly aroma of Carrot Cake coming from the oven, fresh flowers on the table, a bowl of fruit on the counter and coffee of course, ya gotta have a pot of coffee (or tea) is the best room in the home. The room to relax in, the room friends and family always seem to gather in the most. The kitchen is after all, the heart of the home.

4. Plants & Gardening: What better way to express a passion for life and living than to work with soil, digging and planting, weeding and watering...cultivating new life. Just think for a minute about how excited people get in the spring! They can hardly wait to go to the nursery and buy plants and all the needful things for their gardens. It is a passion that stirs deep within us. Tilling the garden, adding fertilizer, tilling again...making the rows and planting the seeds. Watering and weeding, cursing the zucchini that was too small to pick this morning and the size of a baseball bat tomorrow afternoon. With the sweat and hard labor comes the rewards...the pride you feel when you can serve friends and family vegetables and fruits you have grown yourself. Fresh salsa or jam made from the fruits of your labor, salads made from freshly picked greens tossed with home grown tomatoes and dressed with magic potions like Spicy Coconut Cilantro Dressing made from fresh herbs and coconut oil. These things supply a feeling of victory that only a summer garden can provide, a feeling that can not be compared.

I am blessed to have these passions and I am eager to discover new ones.                                Thankfully when I trip, stumble and fall I have the passion God gifted me with to put me back on my feet, on the right track... and heading towards the Mark

Acts 14:15 KJV
15 And saying, Sirs, why do ye these things? We also are men of like passions with you, and preach unto you that ye should turn from these vanities unto the living God, which made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and all things that are therein

*This was a fun blog to write, I am learning how to add some new things in an effort to make reading it more fun for you. Note the underlined words, when clicked on they will take you to the directions or recipe of the underlined item.