take no thought for the morrow

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Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life…….

Look at the birds. They don’t plant or harvest or store food in barns, for your heavenly Father feeds them. And aren’t you far more valuable to him than they are?  Matthew 6:26

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Thank you for the egg.

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Thank you for stopping to say hello.

*****

Samantha was covered in glittering dusty dirt!  Have you ever seen a cat roll around in dry dirt puddles?  It’s very cute.  I watched her walk in the sunshine after a nice roll-around, she was twinkling and sparkling proudly….nothing like a good dust bath.

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Today is a very important day.  Today I figured out how to shoot sun stars!!!!!

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I really like listening to podcasts while I’m walking.  (I walk daily) And one of the ones I listen to is about hobby landscape photography.  The hosts were chatting about sunstars the other day and I was like, “wow, that’s a thing!” and looked up more information online.  It seemed rather straight forward and although the effect is much better during *the golden hours*, I was way too impatient to wait until then.

I put the f-stop to 18 and partially blocked the sun behind a tree and held my breathe.

CLICK.

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It worked!

I know all you professional photographers out there are laughing but this was such fun.

Eventually, I was seeing stars myself!  Rather blinded by the sun, you see.

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This one was ridiculous.  I decided to look for other things to “shoot”.  Like this old rose:

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And this squirrel:

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running away from me like I was something out of his nightmares.  SO insulting.

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It has an acorn in his mouth.  I do so like to crunch acorns under my feet as I walk, so satisfying.

I carried two home in my pocket, along with a pinecone.  I’m giving them to Joanna when I see her on SATURDAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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Life is just way too exciting.

 

Take no thought for the morrow, for the time to come. Be not anxious for the future, how you shall live next year, or when you are old, or what you shall leave behind you. As we must not boast of tomorrow, so we must not care for to-morrow, or the events of it. God has given us life, and has given us the body. And what can he not do for us, who did that?  Matthew Henry

it is well with my soul

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“I know the One in whom I trust, and I am sure that He is able to guard what I have entrusted to Him…..”

“Satisfy us each morning with your unfailing love, so we may sing for joy to the end of our lives.”

“Give us gladness in proportion to our former misery.”

“The Lord says, I will rescue those who love me.  I will protect those who trust in my name.  When they call on me, I will answer, I will be with them in trouble.  I will rescue and honor them.  I will reward them with long life, and give them my salvation.”

Good morning, friends,

I have been absolutely exhausted this week, hence no blogging.  I’m sure you can imagine all that entails being a mom of seven and wife of a busy hard worker.  I love the life God gave me, but there are “crash days” when the responsibilities I have seem overwhelming and pressing.  I don’t even like to write these things, because it seems like a complaint when God has given me blessing upon blessing and I am ashamed of my weakness (although HE delights in it for only then can He get the glory for supplying my need)  How dare I cry and be sad?  However, exhaustion is no respecter of persons and no matter who or where you are, it can hit and cripple for a time.  And that is how it has been for me this week.

Well, that’s not exactly true, I certainly have NOT been crippled.  I have done all the things I had to do.  I’ve read chapters to my sick one, I’ve gone to the pediatrician twice, gotten medicines, drinks, teas, foods.  I’ve gone to a soccer game with a smile on my face.  I have a heart of love and longing to serve my family.  I’ve held and snuggled warm children.  I ordered vomit bags off amazon.  Yes, all these things have happened when deep down what I really wanted was to spend a week on a beach in Hawaii.

But enough of me, I hate writing about myself sometimes because it seems so annoying and self-focused.  Blah blah blah.  Hey, but it’s all the truth as I see it and that’s all I want to do here on my blog, write about my honest life which is very much feelings-oriented to me (which is why I especially appreciate the logical people in my life that balance me out).  And praise God I have eternal hope and salvation…..this current life is only the first page of what life is really going to be for me.  There is so much to look forward to, amazing unspeakably glorious things.

I love you all.  I’m so thankful for my Mom, husband, brothers, sister, friends and for all the verses words offered to me on FB when I wrote this week during a fit of crying on my part.  God has given us each other to help us get through the tough times!  There is so much to be thankful for and usually at least one thing that makes me sincerely laugh every day.  (like this morning when Dave’s kitten proudly carried in a dead mouse that one of our other cats caught and left on the porch).

Here are the pictures from Ethan’s senior soccer night (last night).  It was wonderful sitting on the bleachers next to my friend Caroline and watch our boys play.  Our husbands were there with us, and Jacob and Emily brought Caleb and Sarah as well.  The sky darkened into night and there was a time when the sky was so blue, as dazzling blue as sapphire fiestaware.

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He only has three more games left and he’s determined to make them last out the season.  They’ve been great soccer shoes and have served him well.

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Warming up with his best friend, Zach, before the game.  Oh, these two.  It’s been a joy to watch them grow together.  They are as close as brothers.

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During drills and warms ups they did this exercise where you jump up and bump your teammate.  Made us smile.

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They called down the parents of the seniors for a short presentation.  They called out names and each player was given a rose (to give to his parents).

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After a team picture they played their game and won 1-0.   I took him to the pizza place in town to celebrate with his friends and one of the other Dads brought him home afterwards.

We’re so proud of you, Ethan!

that negative voice in my head

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Sarah has found her little chubby fists.  Sometimes she holds both her hands together in a big double giant fist, and chews away.  She goes at them like they are yummy.  She is yummy.  When I see her face here on my blog, and in real life beside me as I type, I am filled with gratitude to God for His wonderful gift of babies, and children.

Confession:  I’ve been negative lately.  I have negative whispering (shouting) going on in my head all day.  “I can’t homeschool, I’m failing, I’m not a good mother, I am not a good wife, I can’t keep the house clean, it’s a beautiful day and I can’t go outside because I’m too busy, I haven’t read my Bible enough, I’m not a good friend,” on and on. 

I wonder if some of you might be feeling the same way?  If so, you might enjoy some encouragement to think more positively today.  What we say to ourselves is important.  The Bible says to think of lovely things, true and good things.  God knows that a mind filled with hurtful talk is not in our best interest.  He wants the best for his children, He wants us content and joyful.

“Most people carry on a silent conversation with themselves during the day.  This ‘self-talk’ has a direct effect on your thoughts and behaviors.  Understanding self-talk, and its effects on you, can help you learn to rewrite your own self-talk ‘script’ and maintain a positive mental attitude.”

“You’ve probably heard the term ‘self-fulfilling prophecy.’  Self-talk is very much like a self-fulfilling prophecy–something you think about so much you can actually make it happen.  When your self-talk is positive–‘Things will work out,’  ‘I can do this job,’ you are giving yourself permission to succeed, and chances are, you will.  When your self-talk is negative you are giving up on yourself and chances are you won’t even try to succeed.”

“Negative self-talk can increase your distress, and can make effects such as headaches or stomach pain much worse.  Fortunately, positive self-talk can have the opposite effect, leading to a confident, positive attitude.”

“Learn to listen to your own self-talk.  One good away is to use pencil and paper to note your automatic responses to an idea.  Draw three columns on the sheet.  In the first column, write several things you would like to happen.  Then, close your eyes and listen to how you react to each item.  Write your self-talk in the second column.  In the third column, write down a thought which is the opposite of the one in column two.  Now look at your list.  If column two is more positive than column three, you’re already on your way to thinking positively.  If column two is more negative, look at column three for a more helpful, healthier response.  Practice choosing positive self-talk.  You’ll feel happier and more confident.”

~Quotes are all from an article that I was given after having one of my babies.

All this focus on SELF, as a Christian, might make you nervous.  It makes me nervous.  Now I have even more negative thoughts….”boy are you selfish, so self-centered!”  But remember, God does tell us to examine our hearts so that we can be aware of any sin we need to confess.  Using my mind to think negatively can be sinful, but if I confess that sin He is faithful to forgive and cleanse.  I want to glorify God in everything, and my mind is a precious gift from Him.  I want to use it in the best way, in a way that glorifies and pleases my Father in heaven.

I found these verses this morning and wrote them down, to help me when I am being negative:

“Let the words of my mouth AND the meditation of my heart (heart=mind or seat of emotions) be acceptable in Your sight, O Lord, my rock and my redeemer.”  Psalms 19:14

“Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me.”  Psalms 51:10

“For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he.”  Proverbs 23:7

“For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts….these are the things that defile a man.”  Matthew 15:19  (footnote from the Life Application Bible:  We work hard to keep our outward appearance attractive, but what is in our hearts is even more important.  The way we are deep down (where others can’t see) matters much to God.  What are you like inside?  When people become Christians, God makes them different on the inside.  He will continue the change process inside them if they only ask.  God wants us to seek healthy thoughts and motives, not just healthy food and exercise.)

“Bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ.”  2 Corinthians 10:5

“Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are TRUE, whatsover things are HONEST, whatsoever things are JUST, whatsoever things are PURE, whatsoever things are LOVELY, whatsoever things are OF GOOD REPORT, if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, THINK on these things.”  Philippians 4:8  (footnote:  Replace harmful input with wholesome material.  Above all, read God’s word and pray.  Ask Him to focus your mind on what is good and pure.  It takes practice, BUT IT CAN BE DONE.)

 

We need to encourage each other.  I want to thank my friends and family for encouraging me and lifting me up when I am down.  I hope I can do the same for you, when you need a friendly voice and words of love.

THANK YOU!