Worth the Read {the 31 Days edition}

I am certainly not the only writer taking part in the 31 days of series this year.  In fact, there are over 1500 of us participating! I have perused the contributors and wanted to highlight a few that fit in well with this #chronicallywell series. Just click on the links to visit their sites. 31 Days to Living Well as a Family.  This series even incorporates videos with how to's for simple exercises. 31 Days of Stress, Undressed.  This is a very informative series about what stress does to your body. 31 Days of Rest. Rest is crucial in combatting a chronic illness and this is a great series so far. 31 Days of Living Well.  My sweet friend, Teri Lynne, is writing an excellent series based on John 10:10. 31 Days to a Healthier Inner Dialogue.  I don't know about you but I am not … [Read more...]

31 Days to Living Well with Chronic Illness- An Introduction

Hi friends! Every year when I join the blogging community in committing to write on one topic every day for 31 days I question my sanity.  And, I say I will never participate again.  And, every year I develop some type of writers amnesia and when God lays a new topic on my heart, I once again decide to tap out my heart each day in October.  This year I am writing about a topic I personally deal with every day but don't often talk about- living with chronic illness. I was diagnosed with systemic lupus in 2009 }after being misdiagnosed in 2008 with multiple sclerosis}and have several related medical issues including a blood clotting disorder, IC, IBS and the like. You can read more about my journey with chronic illness here, here and here {you can also search the topic in the top right … [Read more...]

Playing Catch Up

It has been a whirlwind two weeks.  Last week, Mike and I traveled to Ft. Leonard Wood, MO to pick up our soldier. It was a long, grueling 15 hour drive.  But, I did get to spend it with this cutie. We watched Jason graduate as a military police officer for the US Army {mama couldn't be more proud} then we headed back home to the other three kids, one grandbaby and two dogs that waited for us at home. We got back at 4am last Friday morning.  Monday, I had two follow-up interviews, was offered positions at both companies and accepted a position as an Admissions Coordinator for a skilled nursing facility about 15 minutes from our home.  {The surprising part is that I start this coming Monday!  Will y'all pray for me?} I have realized this week that I may be creating a monster future … [Read more...]

Peeking In

I tend to be quiet here when I am going through something{s}. Really, I have a lot to say but need to say it in real life before I can go blabbing about it on my blog. Plus, I am sick.  After a night in the ER with two bags of fluids, a really strong pain killer and a nurse that seemed to enjoy digging around to start an IV, I am feeling {slightly} better.  The doctor told me today, at a follow-up appointment, that my sample {I will leave what they sampled to your imagination} is growing a pathogen and that Monday he will have results to let me know what antibiotic I need to start.  Basically, I have bad bacteria in my gut? Who knew. So, in an attempt to keep you updated on my oh-so-glamorous life {ha!} here are some pics from my phone this week: Sitting at the DMV on a Saturday was … [Read more...]

InstaFriday #2

This week has been a long one.  TGIF, for sure! I have two posts in draft that I just don't feel led to hit publish on right now but just know, God and I are going through some stuff together.  Confidence was definitely the right word to choose for 2012.  Stay tuned for an announcement and a fresh series on prayer beginning February 15th. Now, for the week in review... I turned 33 this week and a sweet young friend made me this pretty cake :) Thank you, Halie!  I had a wonderful birthday trip with the hubby (the pictures are tucked in this post) I am pathetically inept at doing this little girls hair in the morning.  Mimi needs some lessons (and some tips for getting her to sit still without the neighbors thinking I am attempting to murder her) Uncle Matt (or Mot as Sweet Pea … [Read more...]

InstaFriday and a Bible reading plan update

I got an iPhone 4s {insert geeky squeal here} right before Christmas! I am in love with this gadget, particularly the Pinterest app and Instagram. Imagine my delight in finding a bloggy link-up for sharing your photos from the week {cause I take a ridiculous amount of photos with my phone}. Here is my week in photos: all my kids sitting in one spot without bickering, a photo worthy moment indeed 12/31/11 Sweet Pea plunking on the piano to keep the residents of the nursing home entertained! 1/2/12 Jared, my uber cool 15 year old who will still take photos with mama 12/31/11 Mike and I saying goodbye to our soldier, Jason, for 3 more months of training. 1/3/12 crazy game night {Partini, anyone?} on New Year's Eve at casa del Smallwood 12/31/11 Spent much of the week like this since … [Read more...]

{day 19} Let go of what’s holding you back

As long as we are holding on to or harboring {unconfessed} sin in our lives, we will never experience the joy of the Lord. ~Pastor Ed Taylor There is something holding you back from experiencing a clean heart.  From experiencing the fullness of the abundant relationship with God that you were designed for. It's you.  It's me.  It's that thing we won't let go of. It is unconfessed sin that is dirtying up our hearts and holding us back from God's best. It doesn't matter what your thing is.  Sin is sin. It doesn't matter if you acknowledge it or not.  Sin is sin. It doesn't matter if you can rationalize and justify it away.  Sin is sin. If you are convicted by the Holy Spirit to let go of something and you continue to hold on to it, friends...you are choosing sin over God. There are … [Read more...]

{day 18} Why forgiveness is so hard

  We serve a God of relationships, a God that values unity. We are called to unity and the enemy is constantly seeking to destroy that in any way possible. Now instead, you ought to forgive and comfort him, so that he will not be overwhelmed by excessive sorrow.  I urge you, therefore, to reaffirm your love for him.  Another reason I wrote you was to see if you would stand the test and be obedient in everything. Anyone you forgive, I also forgive. And what I have forgiven—if there was anything to forgive—I have forgiven in the sight of Christ for your sake,  in order that Satan might not outwit us. For we are not unaware of his schemes. ~ II Corinthians 2: 7-11 Forgiveness is hard because it requires us to surrender our hurt, our desire for justice or revenge, our legitimate anger … [Read more...]

31 Days to a Clean Heart check-in

Thank you for grace, friends. I have not posted every day {didn't I predict that would happen?} I still have much to say on this topic!  We will continue next week with more obstacles to a clean heart and finish up the month with action steps. But, this weekend, the frenetic pace of life MUST slow down and allow me some time with this sweet girl {whom I haven't seen in two weeks}     Pray that we will have safe travels {5 hours each way in the car with a teething Sweet Pea} and that we will make the most of the short visit. I will be back Monday to resume the series. You can read from the beginning here: Day 1 Day 2 Day 3 Day 4 Day 5 Day 6/Day 7 Day 8 Day 9 Day 10 Day 12     … [Read more...]

{day 12}Walk in Faith

Sweet Pea is taking her first tentative steps. She much prefers furniture walking-- holding on to the couch, a chair or even my leg-- to letting go and walking on her own.  When she realizes she is standing without support, she sits down.  As believers, we can become furniture walkers too. We say and think we are giving control to God but in reality we cling to the things that make us feel in control and secure. Sometimes, when we realize we aren't holding on to anything tangible we sit down too. In the pursuit of a clean heart, we must be willing to deal with our tendency toward unbelief. How many times does God have to come through for us before we let go of the furniture? We have this pseudo sense of control.  We fool ourselves into thinking we can handle situations in our own … [Read more...]

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