Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Nick Vujicic :: Attitude is Altitude :: No Arms, No Legs, No Worries

WOW...this guy has amazing perspective/attitude. Truly inspirational!

Nick Vujicic :: Attitude is Altitude :: No Arms, No Legs, No Worries

I read a devotional a few days ago about attitude entitled 'A Time for Peace.'  The scripture it corresponds with is Ephesians 2:14

For he himself is our peace, who has made the two one and has destroyed the barrier, the dividing wall of hostility.

"Snowbirds.  That's what we always called them.  The were folks from the North who sought the milder temperatures of the Sunbelt in the harshest months of winter.  Some locals resented their annual migratory invasion, while others welcomed their business.  But almost everybody considered them different.  One of 'them'...not one of 'us'.

distinctions.  differences.  categories.

How tempting is the universal tendency to categorize people we meet.  We place them safely in little boxes in our minds labeled 'familiar' or 'unfamiliar' while denying our prejudices.  Blue collar or white collar; white or black; educated or underprivileged.  labels become boxes in our minds into which we can admit or reject the people we encounter from day to day.

But differences aside, we really are more alike that different.  And we never know through whom God may want to speak to us, get our attention or touch our hearts.

The person who most aggravates me is quite possibly a reflection of my own shadow side, that part of me that I most dislike, struggle with or find embarrassing.  Before too quickly casting judgment on another, perhaps I need to ask God to help me turn the spotlight back on myself.  Perhaps I could begin by praying for the person I find it difficult to deal with, and in doing so, I may be surprised by who experiences the greatest change in attitude-it might just be me."

I read and re-read that last paragraph several times, as I all too often feel this way regarding a situation in my life.  Am I being unfair in my 'judgments' despite what I know to be true from previous experiences?  Are we really that different, or do we butt heads because we are more alike than I'd like to admit?  I have to admit, when I think about it from that perspective (which honestly, at times I really struggle to do) attitude towards the situation lightens up.  I think sometimes I get so busy caught up in my own plans/ideas, I tell God what I intend to do, and sometimes I even travel quite awhile in my own ideas before I realize He is not with me.  I don't think He leaves me on purpose, or to show me He's the boss.  It's just that in the rush of life and my bullheadedness of thinking my way is right, I ride roughshod over love, humility and what I know to be God's will for my life.  (I truly believe He is leading me to these scriptures/devotionals for a reason).  I tend to leave Him behind, lost in the crowd.

I know that I can cannot go faster than grace, and if I try...well, I will just have to retrace my steps.  I'm on His schedule...not my own! And even though at times it may not seem like it...I AM so grateful to be on His schedule!!!

Today's couple's devotional is also from Ephesians...coincident?  I don't think so.


.....that you being rooted and grounded in love...
Ephesians 3:17

"When we plant a living seed into healthy soil, we expect it to blossom.  And just as flowers in a greenhouse are supplies with an ideal environment for growth, so a home filled with love provides the ideal atmosphere for people to blossom.

We know that children who grow up in loving families tend to sleep deeper, stand taller, and venture further than those who are never secure in their parents' love.  Likewise, when you provide safe, loving soil for your spouse to grow in, they will be more likely to flourish with confidence, knowing they are valued and secure.

What happens when someone is loved over the years?  Their needs are met, dreams encouraged, opinions heard, and successes praised.  They're assured of your patience and forgiveness when they fail, and free to express themselves honestly without fear of your judgment.  They'll even weather intense seasons of disappointment with the stability your love supplies.  Admit it-we'd all love to be loved like that."

Is there a source of tension in your marriage?   Do you love your spouse enough to allow them to express themselves without feeling like they will be judged?  How is your mate affected by living with you?  Will you dare to create a loving environment for your spouse to grow in?

On a side note:  Chris got his C-PAP machine yesterday.  Needless to say, neither of us slept much at all last night....BUT the nurse assured him that after the adjustment period (about 2 weeks), he'd be feeling like a new person.  Please keep him in your prayers!

Here's the first family picture (with only my siblings and parents) that we've had taken in years.

From left to right: My brothers, Jeff and Chris.  Kamie.  My dad, Eddie. Mary Beth.  My step-mom, Roxann.  Me. Rachel, and Dawnetta.

A little bit of family history: Jeff and I are the oldest siblings and we're same age.  Chris is next, then Dawnetta, Mary Beth and Rachel (who are the same age), and Kamie.