new beginnings

Well, my kids started school this week & so far, so good.  I’m excited to watch them learn & grow this year, while ready to encourage their new adventures.

I’ve always liked this time of the year because we get back into some routines, do some fresh learning & mingle with new people.  It’s kind of like having a fresh start in the middle of the year.  But what I like even more is when I think about what it means to have a fresh start each new day w Jesus.  When I wake up in the morning, the mistakes of yesterday are over (there may be some residual consequences) and each morning provides a new beginning.  Each day has fresh choices, ways to improve on our previous mistakes, opportunities to help various people and limitless possibilities to learn more of who God is in our daily living.  I’d encourage you to consider each morning as a great adventure to see what God has in store for you and watch for the ways that He wants to reveal Himself to you.  He’s crazy in love w you & looks forward to being around you, even having some delightful conversations with you 🙂

help me with some people skills

When I was growing up, my parents would always encourage me to develop my people skills – I still need to work on this area.  I remember them saying that while I could learn lots of book knowledge, I would USE people skills every day and they’re right.  People skills are really important – so here are a few things that I’m learning & I would LOVE for you to add your insights on what you feel are important people skills to develop 🙂

Here are some ideas to get our conversation  started:

  • respect – regardless of your frame of mind or preconceived ideas, each person with whom we interact needs respect, even if they’re behaving in disrespectful ways.  I’ve never regretted being respectful, but I’ve always regretted being disrespectful
  • serving others – when I get my mind to look for ways to help or serve others, rather than expecting to be served, I’m almost always deeply content & satisfied in ways that far eclipse the times when I am served
  • humility – the attitude of “all that & a bag of chips” has never really worked for me;  it almost always sabotages any kind of constructive interaction
  • encouragement – I’ve found that people flourish & blossom with encouragement & genuine praise more than put downs & degradation.
  • silence is golden – its very important to screen your thoughts before they’re expressed from your lips.  When I say less, it seems that people think more of me – what a shock ,)

So what are some people skills you have or would like to have?  Whadya think???

some thoughts about relationships

Everyone has challenges from time to time in various relationships:  sometimes our marriages get kind of shakey, we may struggle with various family members with whom we must interact, we may have some friendships that have difficulties every so often and we may even struggle with people at our workplace.  Relationship challenges are nothing new, but perhaps a new way of looking at our relationships can help us navigate some of these frustrations more successfully.  I was reading about how Paul says that Jesus reconciles things in heaven & on earth (Col 1:20) & that Jesus has given us this ministry of reconciliation (2Cor 5:18).  With the premise of Jesus being the mediator between us & our heavenly Father, let’s think for a minute about Jesus being the mediator between us & our fellow man.

bridging the gap

If I don’t have Jesus standing between me & a friend, my husband, a family member or co-worker then the relationship is directly human to human.  Human relationships without divine involvement can easily unravel & disgress to basic human selfishness.  With this in mind, I need Jesus to be the mediator between me & anyone with whom I have any depth of relationship.  I need Jesus to stand between me & others to protect the person from my humanity & to protect me from their humanity.  To have genuine spiritual love in our relationships, we must have Jesus in the middle.  Anything less than Jesus in the middle of our relationships leads to the rapid plunge into human desire, deception & destruction.  Jesus is not only our vertical mediator, but must also be our horizontal mediator.  Just something for your reflection 🙂