Sunday, November 21, 2021

Finding Joy In All Things

 


“It’s amazing that when you look at what you have, instead of what you won’t or don’t have, you usually see that in one form or another you’ve gotten what you wished for. “  Sara Frankl


Did you know that the most repeated command in the Bible is “give thanks?”  I had no idea until I read that statement.  Knowing that God asks us to “give thanks” in all things really challenged me and I had to ask myself if I had a heart that was overflowing with gratitude and joy so I did some digging in the Scriptures and I thought I would share those with you.

In Colossians 1:9-11 it says, “may you be filled with the knowledge of His will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding so as to walk in a manner fully pleasing of Him, being strengthened with all power, according to His glorious might, for all endurance and patience with joy,”   What exactly is this joy that is mentioned here?




I read the following in my morning time with the Lord this morning. "Biblical joy is a perpetual gladness of the heart which stems from knowing, experiencing, and trusting the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Christian joy is unaffected by outward circumstances. We look at Jesus to understand true joy: “Looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God” (Hebrews 12:2). Jesus knew that the will of God for His life was to suffer the utmost pain by dying on the cross to save us, sinners. Yet, despite Jesus’ excruciating death, he remained joyful, because Jesus understood the supreme glory that his death and resurrection bring God daily.” Annie Harris

Wow!  Can you imagine being joyful even as you are being executed on a cross?  I don’t know if I could have done the same thing that Jesus did for us.

Jesus had three kinds of joy that are mentioned in the Bible: Abounding joy, abiding joy and abundant joy. This is the same joy Jesus wants us to have. How to we find or have that same kind of joy? We can have that same joy by first surrendering our lives to Him. Then depending on God to see us through and not depending on our own strength. Also, obeying His commands will bring us joy and cause us to rejoice because His joy is in us.





Gratitude in all things is God’s will for us and it’s based on trusting his unfailing love.  We shouldn’t base our practice of gratitude on the circumstances of our lives.  They can change in a heartbeat.  One thing to remember is that our life without joy is meaningless and true joy can only truly be found in Jesus.

Have a blessed and joyful day!
Emily

Sunday, October 31, 2021

Taking The Narrow Road



Have you ever gone hiking in a new area and came upon two trails and you weren’t sure which trail to take?


Life will always take us down numerous trails or paths. Following the wrong one can cause a lot of frustration, hurt and anxiety.   How do we know which road or path to take?  Well, Jesus clearly tells us in the Bible to stay on the narrow road.  Matthew 7:14 says, "But the gateway to life is very narrow and the road is difficult, and only a few ever find it.”  The wide road is easy, many people walk on it and go and do whatever they please. Staying on the narrow road means we listen God even when He says what we would rather not hear.   You will find that the narrow road is not very popular to be on compared to the wide road where you will find most populated.  

Every time we make the difficult but right decision we are walking on the narrow road. In the world we live in today it is tempting to follow whatever everyone else is saying or doing. It’s normal not wanting to feel left out or that we are missing something. 

Walking the narrow road is sometimes difficult.  It’s like swimming or rowing upstream. To make it even harder, the things we are exposed to brings plenty of things into our lives that look good to the eye but not good for the soul.  It is then that we have to decide are we going down the wide easy road or to turn and say no to those things that look captivating and inviting but in our hearts we know that it’s not the way to go so we turn towards the narrow difficult road.  

Even though it might be hard to choose or walk the narrow don’t forget that God gives us grace.  When the road gets hard or life gets challenging and we don’t seem to have the strength to keep moving it is then that we can ask for help and He will be there to see us through.

  We always need to remember that we don’t have to face the narrow road alone.  He is always there right by our side willing to help and guide down the path that was meant for us to succeed, grow and live a vibrant and fulfilling life.   Jeremiah 7:23 says,  “Live exactly the way I tell you and things will go well with you.”   Think of it this way.  Jesus is the guide on the trail who says, “Do not go that way!   And when we ask why he just says, Trust me!  Many times God will not tell us why we should do things a certain way, in fact Jesus rarely explained in detail the benefits of following his instruction or commands. 

In the end, God wants us to simply trust Him.  

  #EmilysPinkPosts 



Tuesday, October 12, 2021

Gift Ideas Under $100, $50 and $25

 

It's that time of year where we are all writing out our holiday gift giving lists.  Whether it's for family or friends now is the time to think about what you want to give.  Also, with the supply chain craziness we have going on right now in our country it might be wise to shop ASAP to make sure you have all your gift buying done sooner than later. Here are a few ideas that might help you cross some people off your list.


Gifts Under $100

I love to grill but there are times that the weather doesn't permit it so I was excited when I heard about this Smokeless Indoor Grill.  I have been using it for at least most of this year and I love it.  I have. grilled steak, pork chops, chicken, hamburger and fish.  Everything has come out perfectly and cleanup is super easy!  Easy to use and to clean, this countertop appliance has two dishwasher-safe, nonstick cooking plates (one griddle and one grill plate) and a built-in fan that helps to reduce the amount of smoke released into the air.Whatever the weather, you can still enjoy the delicious taste of barbecue from the comfort of your kitchen If you know someone who likes to grill or who is a foodie and you need a gift that is under $100 check this one out by PowerXL.   First time customers use code HOLIDAY to save another $10. 


Do you have an NFL football lover on your holiday gift giving list?  If so, I know they would love this NFL full zip hoodie.  All NFL teams are available in sizes XS through 5X.  This graphic-packed, color-blocked NFL hoodie lets everyone know exactly who you're cheering for. A full-front zipper is joined by your fave team's name, logo, and city boldly splashed all over the front and back. So whether your seat's in the stadium or on the sofa, you've got the gear to cheer on your team. Check out this NFL Full Zip Hoodie for that sports lover on your list that's currently on sale for under $55.  First time customers use code HOLIDAY to save another $10.


My last gift idea for under $100 are these super cool 2 pack of these Tiki Torch Bluetooth Speakers with Ground Sticks.   We have these on our back pool patio and we use them almost nightly.  I love that you can use them with or without the speakers and they recharge with an USB cord.  Perfect for parties or days spent working in the garden, this pair of tiki torch wireless speakers will be the ultimate addition to your backyard. Use the included ground sticks and sync them together with your Bluetooth-enabled device to enjoy your favorite tunes outdoors. Once night falls, turn on the bright LED flame inside each speaker for extra ambience.  This set of 2 is under $65 but if you are a first time customer use code HSN2021 to save $20 more!


Gifts Under $50

If you have a makeup lover on your gift list check out this set of four Tarte Lights, Camera Action Mascara's.  This set normally retails for $92 but you can get them now for under $43 and FREE SHIPPING.  Plus they come with holiday gift bags.  This four-in-one mascara volumizes, lengthens, curls, and conditions the look of lashes. The ultra-black pigment delivers darker, defined lashes with a vitamin-rich formula that conditions with each coat. Plus, get an instant lash lift with the magniLASH wand that boasts shorter bristles add the look of intense volume, while the longer bristles add an instant curl.  First time customers us code HOLIDAY for another $10 off.  


Most every woman loves to have nice nails!  I have a product that I have been using for years that is now part of a 6 piece set.  It's by Perfect Nail Treatment and Color Kit!  Perfect Formula Gel Coats create a think protein rich coating over nails that add an instant temporary strength and thickness effect.  This set retails for $96 but it's currently on sale for under $32.  First time customers use code HOLIDAY to save another $10.  


I love cross necklaces!  I found a beautiful one that is done in sterling silver that I think you will love as much as I do.   It's called the He Is Faithful To Complete It necklace that's based off of Philippians 1:6.  This cross sterling necklace is a beautiful reminder of God’s grace, love, and redemption. A sweet simple design with such a powerful message makes this the best gift for a special occasion or just because. Made in sterling silver and hung on a dainty 18" sterling silver chain.  It's available for $45 but use code EMILY15 to save 15%.


Gifts under $25

I have been using these amazing 7 piece Makeup Remover Towel Set.  Use with a cleanser or just water to gently and thoroughly remove all makeup, dirt and grime!  This set redials for $104 but it's currently on major sale for $26 and free shipping.  There are four color print options to choose from.  When you first get them wash them on the gentle cycle by themselves with no fabric softener.  You can tumble dry or just set out to dry.  After that you can wash them with other things but just not ever with fabric softener.  First time customers use code HELLO10 to save another $10.  

I love essential oils and we love diffusing them daily and nightly in our home.  This Essential Oil Diffuser we have in all our bedrooms!  We have also purchased many of these as gifts.  We love diffusing lavender each night to help us sleep.  I love this one because you can set it to go on for 30 seconds and then off for 30 seconds.  Plus, there are all different light color settings you can choose from.  I love the compact size which is perfect for a night stand, desk or countertop!   We've had ours for at least three years and it's going strong and it's only $15.  

This last items is a great gift but would also make a great stocking stuffer.  it's called the ID Police and it's an amazing invention.  Use the  ID Police to cover bank statements, credit card statements and offers, prescription labels, shipping labels, court documents, tax documents, and anywhere else your name, address, phone number and/or social security number is printed.  The ID Police is so incredibly easy. Simply roll it over your personal info you want hidden and that's it! There's no inking pads or stopping to re-ink your stamp. Just one roll is all it takes and it's under $15.  


Sunday, October 10, 2021

We Are A Reflection of God






"We have been created with a soul which means we have been given an eternal nature.
 Therefore, you and I  are a reflection of God our Creator." 

Psalm 19:1 says, “The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands.”  God who created Heaven and Earth in the seven days of creation saved the best creation for last - Mankind! His very own reflection.   Genesis 1:27 says, "And God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.”

God created us in His image and made us each uniquely. Psalm 139:14 says, “I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made!"  As a Christian and as one who professes to follow Christ I am called to represent or reflect Him in my actions, my thoughts and my words.  Why?  So that others may see the love, grace, and kindness He has brought into my life.  By reflecting God’s attributes in all I say and do my hope is that others will want to know Him too.  

In the Bible, there are several times where we are encouraged to reflect God. John 8:12 says, “When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, ‘I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.’” We are to reflect God and shine His light to others, as His light is shines onto us. When I said “Yes” to Jesus I was filled with a “spiritual light” that shines so that others can see God’s goodness and grace and love.  

Every day we are faced with stressful situations whether they be with friends and family, or with strangers that we meet as we go about  day to day. It’s in those times that we can either be quick to react negatively, or look at the each incident through God’s eyes with love, understanding, and patience. I read once that it is easy to show God’s goodness when we are in a positive place both mentally and emotionally, but our true image and character are conveyed most in the situations that we cannot control. That’s such a true statement.  When we  walk close to God we can find peace and understanding in each situation.  Each situation helps us to grow in God and all He has to offer us.  

 My hope and prayer is that every time I reach out in love, act in kindness, soften my heart in forgiveness, show a little extra patience, and follow through in faithfulness, that others would experience the character of God through me. 

 May you all have a very blessed day and remember Jesus love you very much!  

 Emily 

Sunday, October 3, 2021

When Fear and Anxiety Tried To Overcome Me!


"Every tomorrow has two handles.  We can take hold of it with the handle of anxiety or the handle of faith."  Harold Ward Beecher

I always want to be honest with you here on this account.   I wouldn’t be telling you the truth if I didn’t admit that this week I could feel anxiety and fear welling up inside me.  A few days ago I was on my daily 3 mile walk.  As I was walking all the emotions of everything that is going on in the world finally hit me and overflowed into tears.  I started thinking of it all - the mandates, people losing their jobs, food and other supply shortages, inflation and the price of everything going up, the southern border, election integrity, medical freedom and so much more.  

As the tears began to flow  I looked up to big blue, vast sky that had big fluffy clouds floating in it.  I tried to look as far as I could see even past the clouds as if I was trying to look right into heaven.  I then said to God, “Lord, I know you must see what’s going on down here but it feels like things are spiraling out of control.  Every day we wake up to another insane reality of what’s going on.  It seems the only place I feel peace is when I am asleep. I know you are bigger than my fear!  I know you are bigger than my anxiety!  I know you are bigger than the problems and chaos we face!  I know you are the true Peace Giver!  I need You God more than every before!  I need to feel Your presence even stronger than ever before.  I need You Jesus!!”   

After I spoke those words to God I felt a calmness and peace come over me.  I kept looking up to Jesus!  I felt the burden lifting!  I felt the anxiety lifting!  I knew it was a sign that He had heard me and He was there and He was going to see us through.  That peace and strength He gave me that day was just what I needed to keep on keeping on.  He took away my troubled heart and caused me to instead be courageous to face whatever we have to face.


Are you facing something that is causing fear or anxiety to well up in you?  Is peace missing from your life?  Look up to Jesus!  Call on His name and He will answer you!  He will fill you and He will cover you with the most beautiful peace.  John 14:27 says, “I leave the gift of peace with you - my peace.  Not the kind of fragile peace given by the world but my perfect peace.  Don’t yield to fear or be troubled in your hearts - instead, be courageous!”

I took the picture above while staring out at the Sea of Galilee the last time I was in Israel a few years ago.  This is the same water where Jesus calmed the waters and even walked on water.  In Matthew 14:22-33 we read the account of Jesus walking across the water to the disciples in a storm. They were frightened and thought he was a ghost. So Peter,  yelled out, “Lord, if it’s you, tell me to come to you on the water.”    So Jesus told him to, "Come!"  Peter took a step out of the boat and we can see below what happened when he did.

But when he saw the wind, he was afraid and, beginning to sink, cried out, “Lord, save me!” Immediately Jesus reached out his hand and caught him. “You of little faith, he said, “why did you doubt me?”

When we read this story of Peter we kind of hone in on Peter's fear but it wasn’t the fear that sank him. Jesus didn’t say, “why did you fear?” He said, “why did you doubt Me?” Look at verse 30 ... "But when Peter saw the wind, he became afraid."  Peter only began to fear when he took his eyes off Jesus and looked at the storm.

So here is a lesson we can all learn.  When we  take our eyes off Jesus, we start to lose faith. When we don’t see Him in what’s happening around us, we lose focus and we lose faith.  Is there something you are fearful about that is taking away your faith and peace?  Let me know below in the comments and I will be pray for you that the Lord would take away all fear and replace it with strong faith and His sweet peace.  

Sunday, September 26, 2021

National Daughters Day - A Mother's Confession!


My husband and I have been blessed with two beautiful daughters and three handsome sons.  I love all five of our children equally but I have to admit back when I was birthing children there was something so exciting when the doctor would say, “It’s a girl!!”   I remember after hearing those words with babies #2 and #5  I would say to myself.  Oh yes!!  I get to purchase all the dresses and bows and girly toys like dolls, Barbies and tea sets. 


 Things were smooth sailing raising the girls until they hit around age 12 and then I have to admit rough waters began.  When I think back to those years I wish I could have a redo but I know that’s impossible.  My parenting “girl” skills were not the best and when you combined that with all the hormones of them becoming teenagers it was a collision course for rocky times.  I have to admit mothering the girls in their teen years was hard and I put most of the blame on me.  When the girls would clam up  . .. so would I.  They didn’t talk to me so I didn’t really talk to them.  I felt like they were pushing me away and didn’t want anything to do with me so I just sadly did nothing out of hurt.  This is something I wish I could go back and change.  

Author Paul Tripp states that this strategy of mine was a parenting mistake on my part.  He says, "Sadly, I am afraid, many parents accept the moat that teenagers tend to build around themselves. They adjust to the lack of time and relationship with their teen who, only a few short years ago, wanted to tag along with them everywhere they went. They quit talking when their teenager quits talking. So, at the point where significant things happen, which the teenager was never meant to deal with alone, Mom and Dad are nowhere to be found.

I know that the Bible commands me as a mother to teach and instruct our daughters in the ways of the Lord. (Proverbs 1:8).   The Lord wants us involved with our kids and that process definitely requires a relationship.  For me to have any kind of influence over my daughters it requires me to be close to them, be actively consistent and involved in their worlds even if they act like they don’t want it.  What I should have done was been more involved and more intentional about creating that relationship with my girls whether they wanted it or resisted it.   Thankfully the Lord forgave me for my mistakes and my girls did too.  There have been some very rough years which I take the blame for but thankfully the Lord heals and restores and that’s what He did with me and my girls.  Are things perfect today?  No but they are getting better with each passing day.  

If you and your daughter/daughters are having a rocky time or you fear you are on the road to that go to the Lord in prayer.  The Lord wants to hear our prayers concerning everything but especially our prayers for our children.    Author J.C. Ryle encourages parents with this quote, "The Lord is far more willing to hear than we to pray; far more ready to give blessings than we to ask them — but He loves to be entreated for them. . . . I suspect the child of many prayers is seldom cast away.”   . So never forget that prayer is the key to accessing our daughters heart so with faith and boldness we can ask Him to restore or strengthen our mother-daughter relationships. 

Building a close mother/daughter relationship can take time especially if there has been hurt and mistrust but don’t let that stop you from building and developing a friendship with your daughter/daughters again.  Keep the Lord in the center of it all and He will be there to see you through it all!  How do I know . . .. because He did it for me and my girls.  

Sunday, September 5, 2021

Being Still In A World Of Chaos

 “There is a silence and stillness that should overtake us in the presence of someone that is so overwhelmingly holy and glorious. The call to all is to be still before our holy, awesome, and glorious God.”  John Casteel


This is the final post of my 3 part series on #EmilysPinkPosts where I have been sharing Bible verses that have brought encouragement and helped me through the last month.  Over the last two weeks we have looked at Psalm 56:3 and Psalm 41:1.  Today we will look at the third verse which is, “Be still and know that I am God.”  Psalm 46:10a. 

In a world where chaos runs rampant how do we find peace?  In a world where life brings turmoil in relationships, family and friend how can we fix thing?   In a world where where there are always trials, tribulations and hardships .. . .what can we do to stop the noise, anxiety, fear, stress, worry and tension?    One thing we can do is to  . . . . .  Be still!  Here in this verse the word still comes from a Hebrew word meaning to “let go” or “release.”  We have to be willing to let go of those things that are causing the stress and worry and surrender everything over to God.  

Just when we think we can’t take it anymore and we are about to buckle under the weight of it all God reminds us to “Be still”.   But honestly have you ever thought about just how hard it is to be still and let go and let God?   When we are in the that mode we hardly ever take time to be still.  We toss and turn at night.  Our nerves are shot from the worrying.  We constantly have noise filling our ears with even more chaos.  So how are we to Be still in the storm?  I’m going to share with you some practical ways I have found that help me bring myself back to center and to calm my emotions.

1.  Get outdoors - When I am outdoors all I have to do is look around and see God everywhere.  He is in the colors of creation  - the sky, grass, flowers, trees, clouds, sunsets and sunrises.  Have you ever really looked at the colors of flowers or even vegetables growing in your garden?  Have you ever seen a caterpillar and thought about the transformation it goes through to becoming a beautiful butterfly?   Even going on a walk and breathing in the fresh air and knowing that He has supplied the the oxygen we need to survive on this earth.  This is so much outdoors that help us to remember to Be Still. 

2.  Play praise and worship music - One thing I love about Christian worship music is that the lyrics help to take my eyes off my circumstance and place it on the the Lord instead.  It reminds me of my need for His help and to look to Him!  It reminds me of His faithfulness and His promises.  It reminds me that He fights my battles because He cares and love me.  It helps me to stop with all the negative thinking and fill it with positive thoughts and ways of God.

3.  Stop all the noise - This means putting down my phone, shutting down my computer and turning the TV off.   Its in the quiet where we can truly quiet our soul and we can remember all that God has personally done for us and His faithfulness towards us. 

4.  Pray - When we turn off all the distractions it is then we can turn our thoughts toward God in prayer.  What is prayer?  Praying is communicating or talking to God.  It doesnt have to be a formal conversation.  I talk to Him like I am talking to my best friend.   Praying is a way for us to be honest with our feelings where we can confess our fears and failures and then cry out to Him to move. . As we take the time to pray it is in those moments where we remember what is true and beautiful.  

5.  Read the Bible - The Word of God is living, powerful and active!  It is in the Word where He can speak to you, give your guidance and help to take your eyes off your problem and on to Him.  

We are living in crazy times where chaos and uncertainty is pressing in around us but we have to remember who is the One who can bring peace.  Also, remember being still is doesn’t mean doing nothing.  Regardless of our circumstances that are all around us, we can still our hearts with worship, praying, remembering in the quiet , and reading His truths.  Remember . . .be still and know that He is God and you will soon feel all the heaviness leave.