November 23rd, 2017

Thankful Thursday

Welcome to Coffee Hour @ Chicklit Power & to an amazing Thankful Thursday with Trench Classes United.

I love poetry; it has always brought comfort in hard times.  It’s the thought that goes into the lyrical rhythms that occupies my heart.  Writing has always been my happy place where I can sink in and express myself without judgment.  So enjoy a little magically delicious melody. Put on some comfy clothes (preferably yoga pants, an old comfy shirt and some fuzzy socks… my personal faves), grab a venti extra hot Hazelnut Latte and stay a while.

My Happy Place

 

The best kind of magic is faith;

It’s where I dwell, where I feel safe
It’s where my heart can just be

It’s where my eyes can see

It’s where my life feels whole

It is the comfort where I just know

The solidarity within Him, and the love that surrounds Him

It’s a gift of hope a treasure to be hold

A love to be shared a story to be told

Of solace within Him for a weary heart

And aspiration for the burden, a light in the dark

Yes, the best kind of magic is faith

It’s where I dwell, where I feel safe

It is with faithfulness in Him I take refuge; for He is my anchor; He is my glue

My roots run deep in the soil of God’s love
Built up in Him acknowledging true trust

Strengthened in the heart; overflowing with thankfulness

A love, a respite, a hope, a life truly blessed

 

Thank you so much for stopping by…

Love, Kat

November 22nd, 2017

Wednesday’s Word

Welcome to Coffee Hour @ Chicklit Power and Wednesday’s Word  with Trench Classes United. It’s that time of year again, the time where families are planning get-togethers, menus, and activities…my favorite holiday…Thanksgiving. Instead of a moment of truth, I thought I’d invite you in for a giggle or two! I hope you enjoy reading it as much as I enjoyed writing it!

Twas the Night Before Thanksgiving

Twas the night before Thanksgiving and all through the house

Every creature was stirring, including the mouse

Everyone was working on all of the fixings

The noise and smells were coming from the kitchen

 

The children were busy with their tablets and toys

Captured in their games, they made not a noise

While the adults laughed and worked all collectively

What a beautiful sight it was for onlookers to see

 

When all of a sudden there arose such a clatter

Mom ran to the kitchen to see about the matter

She looked to the left and she looked to the right

She just couldn’t believe what was in plain sight

 

There was broken glass from a favorite platter

And at first glance, she knew it didn’t matter

Everyone was frozen, waiting for her reaction

But she didn’t give the devil that satisfaction

 

The counters were a mess, preparations everywhere

It looked as though a tornado had just gone thru there

The turkey had flown from the platter to the floor

The poor thing looked like it just couldn’t take no more

 

The stove was a disaster waiting to happen

full of pots and pans, handles overlapping

The old mom would have immediately gotten on her broom

And painted the atmosphere with a bit of doom and gloom

 

But the new and improved mom was no longer that way

For she had learned the true meaning of Thanksgiving Day

She stared at each of them and the mess they surrounded

Knowing her response would leave each one of them astounded

 

Now sons, now daughters, in-laws and friends like family

Is this ever a sight for the eyes of my heart to see?

More than the chaos, the mess on the floor

The memories we’re making are worth so much more

 

Mom calmly spoke: Grab a rag, and a dishtowel too

Because it looks like we have a bit of cleanup to do

Let’s work together in cleaning up this mess

It will only take a few minutes or less

Pick up the turkey, and we’ll wash him off

We’ll stuff him but good and put him in the trough

We’ll baste him all over, and get him ready to eat

No one will ever know we stepped on his feet

 

And when the morrow comes and we gather for the meal

We’ll be able to discern what matters and what’s real

Faith, family, friends, love and laughter

Help to bring us all the happily ever after

 

She looked to each of them with tears in her eyes

And said something that she had just realized

Oh, why can’t it be Thanksgiving every day?

Loving each other in a Christ-like way

 

Patience, self-control, love and joy too

Are there for the asking for each of you

We don’t have to wait for a holiday to see

That Christ’s greatest gift is that of family

 

 

Praying you enjoy your Thanksgiving, no matter what circumstances you are in, no matter who you are with … or not with!

Thankfully,

Evinda

 

November 21st, 2017

Tuesday’s Trench Truth

Thoughtful Thankfulness

I love this time of year, when the weather begins to cool down, creation’s colors change and bright oranges, reds and yellows burst forth upon the leaves of the trees.  There’s a sort of fall scent that comes with it all, too.  This harvest season is the beginning of the holiday season and while I’d rather stay in this “thankful” season, I’ve come to realize that we don’t have to have Thanksgiving to be thankful.

Every morning, I begin my quiet time by being still and inviting Him into the rewind of my previous day. Together we go through the things that happened and the moments where He was blessing me, or trying to get my attention, and/or moments that make me super thankful I am His and He is mine. As I am still, I can recognize all kinds of things to be thankful for, and I do acknowledge them through journaling and prayer.

For twenty-two days now, I’ve seen posts on Facebook talking about the things they are thankful for because this is the “month of thankfulness.” Every day brings a new thing to be thankful for and I absolutely love the simplicity of many of the things that others are thankful for. As this month seems to hurry into the next, I can see that the attitude of gratitude has diminished, like so many other good intentions.

Could it be to practice thankfulness is a challenge? I think that it can be and that being thankful requires more than written or spoken works. It requires action. Do my actions line up with my words of thankfulness? Am I living like I’m thankful? What does it take for an attitude of gratitude to be my constant companion?

Here are some truths that I’ve learned and am trying to live about thankfulness:

Learning how to be thankful for the little things gets us through the big, difficult things.

Thankfulness is a choice!

Thankfulness can pull us out of the pit of depression and brighten perspective.

Thankfulness is an act of worship and blesses God!

Thankfulness is an anti-inflammatory that decreases pride.

Thankfulness is an antibiotic for negativity.

Thankfulness opens the door to more blessings.

Thankfulness can turn a frown upside down!

Thankfulness helps us stay in the moments instead of living for the next.

A little thankfulness goes a long way!

Now it’s your turn; what does an attitude of thankfulness do for you? Remember, we don’t need to wait for Thanksgiving to be thankful!

Thankful,

Evinda

November 20th, 2017

Monday’s Mantra

Today, I want to share with you a previously posted blog because I believe it’s worth remembering where we started in our journey with our God.

Is it mandatory to experience an “AH HA” moment when you commit your life to Christ? I sure hope not, because I didn’t!

 

Welcome to Coffee Hour @ Chicklit Power and Megan’s Monday Mantra with Trench Classes United. Warm up that cup of coffee you’ve been carrying around all morning and join me in my salvation story.

 

***********

 

Jesus knew how much I needed Him, so He snatched me up early…

 

My Mother thought our neighbors were undereducated. In other words, STUPID!

She reluctantly let me play with Bobbie and Tom because they were the only kids in our neighborhood close to my age. I thoroughly enjoyed their company but Mom always wished I had someone more my “equal” to play with.

 

One Sunday morning, Bobbie and Tom’s parents asked my Mom if I could go to church with them. To my surprise, she allowed me to go. I will never forget pulling into the parking lot of a pink brick church. At the impressionable age of 6 years old, I had never seen a pink building let alone a pink brick church!

There were no Sunday School classes, everyone just filed into the church and filled the pews. I can still distinctly remember where we sat – 5th pew from the front on the left side facing the altar.

 

No one could ever accuse my neighbors of being a traditional prim and proper type of Christian family. They worked hard, played hard, and then some. My playmates, Bobbie and Tom, were always into some kind of mischief, which was what I liked most about them. Today was different though. Today they all sat in a neat row, backs straight, hands folded in their laps, and feet firmly planted on the floor, waiting expectantly for the sermon to begin.

 

The most colorful character I had ever encountered, up to this point in my short life, confidently approached the pulpit. His presence was so huge that the pink brick church could hardly contain it. His booming voice filled the city block surrounding him and he wore the largest cowboy hat I had ever seen. His name was Preacher Cowboy George!

 

I know he delivered a great sermon because the congregation was on fire. The only, and most important, part I remember is when Preacher Cowboy George asked, “Have you committed your life to Christ? Have you asked Jesus into your heart? If not, then come on up and we will do it together here, today!” My first reaction was to jump to my feet and head straight to the altar, but not before looking to my neighbors to do the same. There they sat, calmly watching and smiling at those who were making their way to the front of the church. UH OH! I didn’t know anything about asking Jesus into my heart, yet clearly my “undereducated” neighbors not only already knew – they already had! I felt ashamed.

 

I lagged behind on my way out of church. I had been too afraid to stand up in front of the congregation, to accept Christ, all by myself.

 

That lone “UH OH” moment led to a nightly prayer asking Jesus into my heart for the next 16 years.

That lone “UH OH” moment led to some very spectacular “AH HA” moments throughout my lifetime. That lone “UH OH” moment changed the path of my life forever.

 

So, as you navigate your way through the highs and the lows of the coming week, please keep in mind …

 

Oftentimes God’s “UH-OH” moments are actually “AH-HA” moments in disguise!

 

Enjoy this day that God has given you.

 

Lovingly in Christ,

Megan

November 17th, 2017

Faith-Filled Friday

Oh, I’m so thankful for weekends…and for you for taking the time out to join us for Coffee Hour @ Chicklit Power and Faith-Filled Friday with Trench Classes United. Grab your coffee and your Strand of Faith and let’s go tie some knots in our faith with this Vlog! I’m sure you’ll be able to relate to it.

Just click on this link and enjoy!

https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B0X9vrdrYrmTZVBaM1psYngwZjQ/view

Love,

Evinda

 

November 16th, 2017

Thursday’s Trench Truth

Welcome to Coffee Hour @ Chicklit Power & to another beautiful & Thankful Thursday with Trench Classes United.

This is Kat Lange again…Let’s get real.

Put on some comfy clothes (preferably yoga pants, an oversized sweater and some fuzzy socks… my personal faves), grab a venti extra hot Caramel Brulee Latte and stay a while.

Grudges, gossip, animosity, resentment…I don’t think any of those solve any problems.

Has it helped you?  I am just curious to know if you have ever felt better after holding a grudge?  Has anyone ever said, “Yeah, I don’t like that person” and then been content with themselves in that moment?  Has anyone’s heart been fulfilled when bad-mouthing his or her enemies?

The way I see it is… what’s the point of holding on to the hurt?

Let us not get so caught up in cultural conversation that we forget our true calling. Instead, may the peace of God saturate our hearts and tender our words to one another in kindness.  Not forgiving others leads to instability, in relationships and within our own selves.  Bitterness makes the bones and heart rot.

“In fact, not forgiving is like drinking rat poison and then waiting for the rat to die.” Anne Lamott, Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith (1999)

Like anyone else, I have hurts from my past.  To be honest, learning to love and let go is such an emotionally arduous task.  Trying to anchor myself in forgiveness is a hard pill to swallow.  I have to learn that in the end what they did says more about them as a person and I will no longer play into that selfishness.  It is an uphill battle for sure but one that my faith in the Lord is helping me to climb.

I have had to come to terms with how I hurt myself in my past and who I am today and the beauty is: I am ok with me!  My goal is transparency and my hope is for healing.  And as I go through my struggles I realize that there is no way I can move forward with this bitterness in my heart.  Forgiveness is a hard journey, for sure, but one that is so worth it.

Joy cannot thrive in a bitter heart.  Hope cannot flourish in a toxic mind.  True happiness cannot be present where anger resides.  Optimism for a better future can breed the desire for forgiveness.  Do not dwell in the dark places of your pain instead lift your eyes to the light and to the love.

Ephesians 4:32: “Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.”

Thank you for reading friends…

Love,

Kat

November 15th, 2017

Wednesday’s Word

dil·i·gent·ly

Characterized by steady, earnest, and energetic effort

Have you ever searched for something steadily and earnestly, almost to the point of frustration? I know as I get older I have these brain toots that often send me on an energetic search as I try to find something I put in such a safe place…so safe I can’t find it!

When I think of this word, I can’t help but stop and ask myself, what is it that I pursue “diligently”?

Welcome to Coffee Hour @ Chicklit Power and Wednesday’s Word @ Trench Classes United.

Hebrews 11:6 says: “But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him. “

I can think of a few things I search for diligently. Just a couple of weeks ago, my husband and I decided to take my writing chair out of the writing room and put it in our living room to add seating for our growing connection group. Ever since then, I’ve been searching with consistent effort for a new chair for my writing room. Or how about that perfect gift for someone; we don’t know what it is until we see it so our search is pretty steady, earnest and energetic, right? How about this one: For some reason, the face of an old high school friend keeps coming into your mind and so where do you go to search him/her out? Well, now we have Google and Facebook, right?

Now let’s keep that type of diligent searching in mind as we think of the things of God. What kinds of things should we be searching for as it relates to our spiritual nourishment?

Coffee Hour Friend, I don’t know about you, but sometimes life can be so fast, that we forget to slow down and search for the things of God, for those God winks, those God-incidences that have His handprint all over them. We can get going so fast, even doing Kingdom work, that we forget to stop and fuel our faith with the things of God, like spending time in His Word, and/or talking with Him first thing in the morning. And later in the day, taking a time out to just sit through an entire worship song and tuning into Him while tuning out the distractions.

Oh, to diligently search for opportunities to be with Him and not be so busy doing things for Him…

Love,

Evinda

 

November 14th, 2017

Tuesday’s Trench Truth

 

 

 

Did you know that one of the Hebrew translations for the word “truth” is “an unveiled reality”? Thanks for joining me today for Coffee Hour @ Chicklit Power and Tuesday’s Trench Truth with Trench Classes United. Come on in for a moment of truth that I pray will become your unveiled reality.

Have you ever been at a party and they broke out the limbo stick and suddenly before you knew it, you were in line and it was getting close to your turn to twist and contort your body into some form of a pretzel so it would go under the bar without touching it? And when you made it through that first time, you breathed a huge sigh of relief and began planning how you would twist and contort to get under the bar this next time around which would be harder because it was lower, right?

Well, when someone lets us down, do we fall down, like we do in that limbo line when the bar is just too low, or do we get up and rise above the hurt and disappointment?

If we don’t rise above it, is it because we don’t know how to?

Perhaps it’s time to lower our expectations, just like in the limbo line…now, not all the way to the ground, but seriously, think about it: oftentimes we are let down because our expectations are too high.

See, hurt people hurt people…but found people find people! Health recognizes health!

Mark your calendar for January 18, 2018, and join us to learn how to live with expectations that set your relationships up for success!

Love,

Evinda

 

November 13th, 2017

Monday’s Mantra

I met an elderly lady while grocery shopping for a Thanksgiving turkey. She told me she had lost her husband a year and a half ago and how horribly difficult it had been for her to be without him. She would get up every morning and just go through the motions of her day. Until one day, while listening to her favorite Country Western radio station, she heard Carrie Underwood’s beautiful voice belt out, “Jesus, Take the Wheel.”

Welcome to Coffee Hour at Chicklit Power and Megan’s Monday Mantra with Trench Classes United.

The, now impassioned, elderly lady continued to tell me she had started to ask “Jesus to take the wheel” all of the time, and even though she still missed her husband, she had places to be … like sharing her story with me in the middle of a busy grocery store aisle!

It all sounds so simple, too simple…but, it works! I’ve tried it J

Truthfully, it is simply too easy to lose sight of Jesus. A difficult decision, running behind schedule, reshuffling of plans, an unexpected emergency, even a misplaced cell phone, can easily distract our focus away from Him. Yet, these are the very times we need to call on Him. Truthfully, all times are the very times we need to call on Jesus.  He promised to keep our steps steady by His word. He promised that everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.

All we need to do is ask…

“Jesus, take the wheel; take it from my hands

Cause I can’t do this on my own. I’m letting go,

So give me one more chance and save me from this road I’m on …

Jesus, take the wheel

Your comments are always most welcome.

Lovingly in Christ,

Megan

November 10th, 2017

Faith-Filled Friday

It’s Faith-Filled Friday! Grab your coffee and your strand of faith for some great knot-tying in and for your faith! Jennifer has a thought-provoking question to ask us…and an answer, her answer to that same question! Come on in for a few!

How would it change your mindset if you suddenly realized that you were born to solve a problem? 

When I was young I would read history books or stories of people who did great things and marvel at what they were able to accomplish.  If only I could do great things.  If only I had a special purpose in life.  That hope was tossed aside by the realities of my life: Parents who often worked late and weren’t home, bullies at school, an abusive husband.  I have often felt unworthy, not good enough and that having a purpose in life was for someone else and not me. 

Then one day I heard… “You are a solution to a God problem.”  It wasn’t a voice from on high but from the pulpit. I had just moved to Florida and it was the second or third time attending this church.  The pastor went on to explain that all of us were created to solve a “God problem.”  Every hard situation, every joy was meant to fulfill that purpose.

Every person is born with purpose, to solve a God problem.

“The purposes of a person’s heart are deep waters, but one who has insight draws them out.” (Proverbs 20:5)

All people are made in the image of God. Each of us are born with a purpose and calling that we can discover… or completely miss. The influence of the Holy Spirit in the lives of believers gives us insight to His purposes for us.

I have an assignment from God specifically for me.  Jeremiah 29:11 states, “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”

This truth opened up a world of hope and a resolve to discover that plan and achieve it.   I no longer feel like someone tossed about by my experiences.  I feel free to walk out what God has called me to do.

How about you?  Do you feel bound up by the past and/or how you view yourself?  Do you believe God has a special assignment for you?  He does, and He is waiting for you to accept it.

Jennifer,