Pages

Thursday, September 10, 2020

Post 2 of My God's-Plan-Hunt During the Pandemic

This is a follow-up post to this one on going bonkers during the #Pandemic. 



Life was already a bit boring pre-COVID-19 since I'm in the empty nest. It was calm and peaceful, but I was always on the lookout for what else to get involved in. My husband is a hermit, so I am pretty much in charge of our social life or on my own. I work from home so need outlets. 

Right now my husband is also working from home. He likes that he can go a few days without showering! He says it's too much work now to get dressed to go into the office which is now open as long as people social distance.

So back to my last post about going on a God Hunt.

MY DECLARATION 

I was compelled to begin with a declaration about what I believe. I've put it into picture form:



MY GOD'S-PLAN HUNT

I have a stack of books beside my bed. I read a few pages from each nightly and take notes. I didn't come up with anything earth-shattering yet, but good nonethless.  

Here are a few of my notes:

Like a football team all working toward the same goal, you, God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit are on the same team.

Don't hesitate to use the website GotQuestions.org to learn when you have questions. 

Because you are made in the Image of God, you represent God to the world. That's important.

Give others the gift of attention whenever you can.

God already has the solution for your life.

You will come out better than before, so don't fear.

God will make a way where there seems no way.

Let Jesus feed and sustain you.

Do what you CAN instead of focusing on what you CANNOT do right now.

Take one day at a time. 


No real steps were spelled out, but lots of encouragement. 

I am not making plans but assessing each day and deciding as the day goes on how I'll spend it. 

We are in a fortunate age to have technology that keeps us connected. I'm the leader of a shelter-at-home Facebook group. I'm part of other groups too. 

I'm updating some of my platforms here and there. I'm out of Twitter Jail finally.

ORGANIC GROWTH 

I once talked in a mastermind group about ORGANIC GROWTH. I think someone thought I meant growing vegetables without fertilizer. No, what I mean by organic growth is when we get an idea and take action. It is about making tweaks and taking small steps. Updating my platforms, for instance, is organic growth if it helps me connect with more people and make more sales eventually.

One thing we can all do is be part of organic growth right now. If you have a ministry, small business, or are wanting to grow a platform for your writing, music, or another undertaking, every small step you take online will help. You won't see the progress, perhaps, except in hindsight. 

My organic growth is happening right now as I write this blog post. What is it you need to do to take a new step?


 


Tuesday, September 08, 2020

Going on a Plan Hunt

The following doodle was done 3 weeks into the Ontario, Canada #coronavirus shelter-at-home phase. I called the doodle Going Bonkers. I don't claim it to be a great piece of artwork, simply a reflection of my mind at the time. A way to relieve stress. 


Going Bonkers



Through the pandemic sheltering-at-home mandate, I've done pretty well. All except for that day and tonight. 

In Ontario Canada, we have been given strict guidelines. We, more or less, just assume the virus is out there lurking everywhere. We stay home as much as possible and practice the guidelines when we go out. 

What's With the USA?

I know much of my readership is American. I see photos on Facebook of friends gathering for conferences and concerts or eating out in groups. I read posts where friends have gone to church. They don't follow the same guidelines my husband and I do. Canada's new cases are so much lower and we still shelter. Why? Because the scientists have taught us so much more about the virus now than they knew in March. They've taught us you can have it and not have symptoms. The old "I have no symptoms" lingo no longer works. AND those that get it can die quickly. Those that survive are plagued with fatigue, brain, kidney, and heart issues. 

Seeing my American friends indulge themselves angers me. Maybe they are happier being not so tied down, but we all need to be part of the solution, not play roulette with the virus. The faster we kill it the better for all. 

In Canada, our churches are still mostly closed. My church met outdoors in August. Only this past week did they attempt to reopen their building. They allow a small number of people who have signed up in advance. They sit apart, wear a mask, and practice good hygiene. 

My husband and I err on the side of caution and haven't gone out much at all except for groceries, medical appointments, pool chemicals, drug store purchases, and walks. 

My biggest challenge is filling the gap I lost with my gym group. My last session was in early March. I was coming up to three years there and was growing a little bored but thought I'd try something different before quitting. Then the gym closed. It is reopening in new ways, but from I read, it is one of the more dangerous types of locations to meet in regarding virus spread. So I quit my membership. And now I have that same old gaping hole again where socialization is concerned.

Anger

For years, working from home, I poured out my complaint to God about my need for human contact, stimulation, a place to belong. The gym group filled the gap. Now it is gone as is the new church we began attending. I have no place to belong aside from Facebook. I was even put into Twitter Jail for saying something negative about the US president.

It's my mom's birthday coming up and I will miss it because other family members have booked the spot and they don't all social distance. My mom said not to come.

Bored

We've filled our time with movies and watching the US politics situation which has also driven us bonkers. We had our son with us for several weeks. He's returned to school. I've spent a lot of time doing yard work, and that will soon be over. I've bought some new Christian books which help immensely, but I have an undercurrent of boredom that hits me nightly.


I Long For a Plan

Going into the fall, I want a plan. I'm scared my seasonal affective disorder will return. I'm scare isolation will do me in. 

It seems every time I'm in this type of quandry I go on a God's Plan Hunt. My Plan Hunt starts now. I'm not sure I will fast, but I will be putting my ear to the ground to listen for God's nudges. I will apply myself to study and prayer. I will look for him to give me hope and spell out a path. I will post what I learn here.

Have you gone on a plan hunt? Maybe you can add to the comments what you have discovered. What new insight has God given you?





Tuesday, September 01, 2020

Inspiration for Daily Living

 


Just some random thoughts for those looking for some daily living suggestions:

  • Start each day as a new one.  
  • Let the past go--even what happened yesterday.
  • If you have a plan for today, commit it to God, and move forward.
  • If you have no certain plan, ask God what he would like you to do with your time today. 
  • Stop. 
  • Listen.  
  • Concentrate. 
  • Make a mini-schedule in your mind or on paper.
  • Start taking little steps toward a bigger goal. 
  • Clarity arises as you take steps.
  • Stand back and enjoy your progress.
  • Do something you think is fun.
  • Do something that counts as fitness.
  • Do something that is creative.
  • Do something that is nurturing.
  • Encourage someone.





Isaiah 41:13 New International Version For I am the LORD your God who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, Do not fear; I will help you.

Monday, July 20, 2020

Ask God for His Plans


We are in strange times. Where I live, we are crushing the COVID-19 virus by adhering to strict protocols. 

Most of us are still sheltering at home and only shopping for essentials. We don't have our usual routines. No gyms are open, there are no concerts, retreats, churches are closed, there is no meeting with groups unless we are six feet apart and wearing masks. The only people we are to hug are those who have agreed to be in our bubble. That means they are not to be in another bubble too, just ours. My husband and I have no bubble since our daughter decided to join a different bubble, my son is away, and extended family are not adhering to the rules so we have refused them visits. 

I know where you live, you may not be heeding these protocols (though I believe you should be until we have a vaccine). Nevertheless, much has been ripped away from us during this pandemic. Our lives are upset. 

I used to enjoy my gym group three times a week and our social gatherings. That's ended. I used to run errands without thinking, and now I have to carefully plan. I used to write in between those activities, and lately, I've had no motivation to write.

We are also in a heatwave so the usual outdoor activities of gardening, swimming, going for walks, sightseeing are stalled due to dangerous/discouraging heat levels. 

I could sit depressed reading Twitter and Facebook, or I could go back to my go-to of asking God to show me what to spend my time on. I invite him into my day and ask him to take authority over my thoughts, my words, my actions, and my time. Afterall, God desires to order our steps. 


Psalm 37:23
The steps of a man are ordered by the LORD, and He delights in his way.



I can try to plan with my own mind, but I've learned it's better to listen for God's plans. I do that by listening for nudges and then following. This requires instead of laying on the sofa sleepily (like my mind tells me to do), to stay alert and to take steps when I sense them.


Proverbs 19:21
Many plans are in a man's heart, but the purpose of the LORD will prevail.



Wednesday, May 20, 2020

Reassurance During Your Sheltering



  • Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your path.  Proverbs 3:5-6    


Hi friends, how are you doing during this pandemic? 

Nothing in our world is normal. For that reason, our brains are being challenged on many levels. We have to 'think' before attempting to go anywhere. We have to get our mask, and maybe gloves, other plastic, or sanitizer if we're touching strange surfaces like grocery store freezer doors. We have to Google search the store we plan to go to to check their hours and procedures. When we get there we might find they have rules that we didn't expect. Then we're thrown off guard. 

Frustration is a word I'm coming across in the community. 

I'm also hearing about lack of motivation. Many have all the time in the world and are just not motivated as they used to be to complete projects. 

Others are feeling sad or depressed as they try to process the sudden halt to their regimen or the business they were building. For some it's not being able to visit grandchildren that bothers them. Yesterday, I cried after being frustrated grocery shopping.

Many others are feeling bored. Their meaning or purpose in life has diminished. 


***

If you see yourself in any of the above examples, I mostly want to assure you, you aren't strange, faulty, or weak. You are a normal human going through new challenges beyond your own control. 

I challenge you to ask God to reveal new purpose in the midst of your sheltering. I feel God wants us to bloom where we are planted. Every place you put your foot as a believer is Holy ground, so to speak. You can still apply yourself with excellence on the few things that are within your control. You may be the listening ear someone needs.Ask God how he might want you to reach out to others even if it's not in person.

You can use this time to study Christian living themes, to pray more often, or to take online courses. 


***

Yesterday, a friend did a small porch drop at my home. I'm in a book group with her. I can tell she probably enjoyed preparing the gift. She and her husband also enjoy going for drives, so that in itself added a layer to her life. It also added a layer of human contact to my life. It was nice. 

I dropped off scrubs and face masks as well as cards to two PSWs in my neighborhood in April. It felt good to do a good deed. I know it's not easy to find those good deeds when you can't be in contact with people, but maybe you can send a card or write an email. 

When thoughts arise of what you're missing out on, change the thought to ask God what it is right where you are he wants you to do. As long as you have breath, you have purpose!