Thursday, November 3, 2011

Choose Joy Every Day!

Its the first week of November and I can't help but want to shout out what I'm thankful for, or what it is that brings me Joy.

 Why is it that we seem to run to November with a thankful heart, when our hearts should be thankful all year round?

Maybe it's because another year has almost passed and we are thankful for what it brought into our lives, and that we survived it.

Can I get an Amen?!

I do believe in celebrating the season with a heart full of thankfulness, but I believe that it can be celebrated each day.

I believe we get so caught up in the mondaine parts of life, that we forget to step back, and just breathe in our every day blessings.

This week I would like to find the Joy in five areas of my life, that I might not normally see any sort of Joy in.

It's about CHOOSING TO SEE THE JOY that we would normally pass by with a familiar shrug.

1. Laundry!

If you know me then you know that I love to clean.
Yes... I know I have a problem.
There is actually one part of cleaning that I despise, and that is laundry.
Every. Part. Of. It.
Shocking, I know.

Last week I was shopping and found this at the dollar store for only $5.00 a box!

These beautiful sheets of goodness have totally changed my laundry experience.
They are unbelievable.
They clean great.
They make my laundry smell like heaven
and the clothes come out of the dryer so soft, that I WANT to fold them!

And as an added bonus, I'm not allergic to them!
No itchy rash!
(FYI...if your just meeting me, I'm allergic to the planet.)

There are 24 sheets in the box.
If I play my cards right, that box of wonder-mous JOY will get me about two weeks of laundry.

Oh...and when the sheets come out the dryer, they still smell great!
My husband takes them and puts them under the seat of his truck to make it smell clean.
(I guess that means they are 4-in-1)

2. My dogs.

If you don't know by now, I have a love hate relationship with my dogs.

I hate them because...
a.  I am allergic to them.
b.  they like to lick and I no-lika-da-lickin'.
c. they have really gross bodily functions...eewww!
d. I am allergic to them.

I love them because...
a. they sleep next to me on the couch and warm my feet when they are cold.
b. they are cute and soft
c. my kids adore them
d. as much as I might not want to admit it, they are a big part of our family.

Something happened this morning that really made me LOVE them.
It was about 5:00 a.m. and my little male dog kept barking and barking.  When he barks, his momma begins to's like they bark in round or something.
It was a little too early for him to need to go outside, so I found it odd and tried to go back to sleep.
He wasn't taking no for an answer and kept on barking, which then turned into an obnoxious howl.
I got out of bed very frustrated and stormed into the living room to let him outside.
As soon as I opened the door, he ran behind the opened door on the porch and began barking.
I immediately thought,
"Oh no! A Raccoon!"
(I have a fear of raccoons...that's a whole other blog post.)

I grabbed the broom next to the dryer, because we all know that a broom is the perfect weapon to kill a raccoon, and slowly peeked to see what was behind the door.

It was my cat!!
My eight year old cat!!

He must have snuck out the door when my husband left for work, and my little dog knew somehow.
I can't even imagine what would have happened to him if my dog would not have known he was outside.
He's not cut out for the outdoor life.  He's quite a diva, that big fat Poppa cat.
I was amazed and so proud of my little dog.

He brought me Joy this morning!

3. Electricity

Seriously, this is one that we all take for granted.

This week, I definitely found the Joy in it.

My little guy suffers with seasonal allergies, go figure.
He caught a bit of the crud this past week and began having fever and a horrible cough.

We had to do breathing treatments for several nights every few hours, so that he could get some relief and stop coughing.

I would plug up his breathing treatment machine and lay next to him, holding it up to his face while he slept.

I remembered before we found out that he had allergies, and that he was also prone to catching the croupe, we would sit down on the floor of the bathroom with the shower on the hottest temperature we could get it, and stay there for hours.  I would hold him on my lap crying and coughing.  The midst helped open up his lungs and break up all of the mucus, but we were both miserable sitting there on the floor.
When he was diagnosed with all of the allergies, we got his nebulizer machine to use and it had the same effect as the misty bathroom.

It was wonderful!!
I could lay with him in his bed and we could both rest much better, or he can sit on the couch and watch a movie while doing his treatments.
That makes him much happier, and in return makes this momma VERY happy.
We can only do that because of the blessing of ELECTRICITY!

What JOY is in that!!

4. My daughter traveling.

This has been a big issue for me lately.
My daughter left home for college and she travels often on different mission trips.
So far, she has only traveled here in the states, but to a mom whose daughter barely left our state of Louisiana, it's a big step.

I get nervous every time she leaves on a trip and I stay nervous until she returns safely home.

This past week she traveled with her Master's Commission classmates to Alabama to work at a House of Horrors.
They show thousands of kids the darkside of the world and how our sin can be so detremental to our lives. It takes the mask off of the enemy and allows them to see who he really is and how much of their lives he is out to destroy.
They end the tour through the HOH with a powerful message of salvation.

She returned home a couple of days ago and was so excited to tell me that over
1200 people gave their lives to the Lord!!
I was blown away with that number!
That's an army of people!

I thought of how silly I have been worrying about her traveling.
Yes, I am a mother and maybe it's just part of the mothering process, but after hearing about her trip to Alabama and the powerful experiences she had there...I have a whole new outlook on her traveling.

I always knew that she would be a world traveler.
I knew she would be a world changer, and being able to hear what God is doing through her team, it totally confirms that for me.
It gives me a peace within.
I really do need to trust God more when it comes to her, I really do.

I CHOOSE TO SEE THE JOY in her traveling and being away from home.

5. 2nd, 3rd, and 4th chances!

My husband came home yesterday and he and the kids were circled around our overflowing candy bowl from our Fall celebration, talking about their day.

He opened a small pack of candy and walked over to me.

He gently grabbed my right arm, and placed a candied bracelet around my wrist.
He said, "I love you. I always have. Happy late anniversary."

I melted right there in the living room.

Be still my heart!

It reminded me of 2nd, 3rd and 4th chances.
It reminded me of where we were a few years ago...angry, hurt and living in two different homes.
We were separated, our family was split.

But what Joy is there in 2nd chances!!

What Joy is there when even though we give up on eachother's love...God doesn't.
He nudged as back to one another and knew how sweet our love for eachother could become.

And it has!
How sweet it is!
Oh, how I love that man of mine!
God proves His faithfulness to us over and over.
He gives us chance, after chance, after chance to be redeemed.

His Grace covers all.

No matter how often we need it, He is there covering and loving us, giving us a new start.
Each day we wake up is a new day and another chance!

I'm sitting here with a grin spread across my face thinking of the overwhelming love I have for my husband...

and CHOOSING TO SEE THE JOY in 2nd, 3rd, and 4th chances!

Choose to See The Joy in five areas of your life this week.

Write them down and post them on your refrigerator to remind you to SEE THE JOY every day!

Choose Joy Every Day!

Be blessed today!!

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