A personal journey blog

This thing called life….

Oh my soul, you’re not alone

Do you ever feel alone?  Even though you’re not physically alone?  I have.  And I’m pretty sure others have felt this way at one time or another.  It’s kind of an icky feeling, right?  Maybe even a little depressing or sad.

Today I’d like to write about a song that I’ve been hearing for about a week straight.  I would hear it on the way to work then again on the way home.  Finally I said “OK OK!  I’m writing tonight!”.  So here I am.  I think Spirit was pushing me, what do you think?  🙂

So before I jump in, I’d like to point out that this song is by Christian band “Casting Crowns”.  But can certainly be applied to whatever you believe.  My favorite author, Sylvia Browne (RIP), always said “take what you want and leave the rest behind”.  And so we begin.

Oh, how you worry

Oh, how you’re weary, from fearing you lost control

This was the one thing, you didn’t see coming

And no one would blame you, though

If you cried in private

If you tried to hide it away so no one knows

No one will see, if you stop believing….

So the start to this song probably relates to most of us.  Could be a death, loss of a job, or you just messed up somehow.  Sounds like a doozy, whatever it might be.  Stress can wear us down.  And I’m sure I’m not the only one that does this, but I’d rather be upset/cry/be angry in private (that might be the Capricorn in me!).  I don’t like to show that side of myself.

Oh my soul, you are not alone

There’s a place where fear has to face the God you know

One more day, He will make a way

Let Him show you how, you can lay this down

‘Cause you’re not alone

I feel like this is Spirit/God/Your higher belief responding to our problem.  Letting us know, or reminding us that we definitely NOT alone.  It almost reminds me of Romans 8:31 – “What then shall we say in response to these things?  If God is for us, who can be against us?”

Here and now you can be honest

I won’t try to promise that someday it all works out

‘Cause this is the Valley

And even now, He is breathing on your dry bones

And there will be dancing

There will be beauty where beauty was ash and stone

This much I know

The verse refers to Ezekiel 37 1-14.  The Valley of Dry Bones.  I won’t quote all 14 verses (you’re relieved) but just a little bit of it.  “Prophesy to these bones and say to them ‘dry bones, hear the word of the Lord!’  This is what Sovereign Lord says to these bones:  I will make breath enter you, and you will come to life.  (Quest study Bible)

So what I get from this is even though we go through rough patches, if we keep our hearts open, Spirit will help us come to life (clear our minds to deal with said issue).

I’m not strong enough, I can’t take anymore

(You can lay it down, You can lay it down)

And my shipwrecked faith will never get me to shore

(You can lay it down, you can lay it down)

Can He find me here

Can He keep me from going under

Oh my soul, you’re not alone

This was pretty powerful to me.  As humans, we’re always whining about something, right?  So even though we’re saying every reason why we can’t – we are weak, we’re losing faith etc. He wants us to just lay it all out there.  Lay it on Spirit.  Easier said than done, right?  We can only do our best, after all we’re only human.  One of my favorite quotes from Pierre Teilhard de Chardin is “We are not human beings having a spiritual experience.  We are spiritual beings having a human experience”.  I love this because I totally believe it 100%!  We are here to experience this thing called life for a reason.  Sometimes I really wonder what I was thinking when I was writing my chart on the Other Side!  So with the good, bad and ugly, remember….YOU are not alone.

Listen to the song if you get a chance, it really is beautiful!  Thanks for reading!

 

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Keepin’ it positive

While getting ready for work this morning I could hear the steady rainfall outside.  The bedroom windows were wide open so it got my attention.  It annoyed me.  I’m not sure why really.  Maybe because the drive to work would be slower than normal.  Or because I’d have to dig my umbrella out of my car.  A bad hair day maybe?  Who knows!

“Rain is grace; rain is the sky descending to the earth; without rain, there would be no life.” -John Updike

But then through the open windows I can also hear all the birds chirping loudly.  They seem very happy it is raining.  That halted my negative thoughts right there.  The rain is giving them a bath.  I imagine them fluttering around splashing in the raindrops.  The rain helps things to grow, makes our drab winter colors beautiful Spring colors again.

At that moment, I decided to keep my thoughts positive.  I finished getting ready for work and headed out the door.  The rain didn’t bother me like I thought it would.  And all throughout my day if my thoughts took a negative turn I just remembered those happy chirping birds.  It’s funny how such a simple thing as chirping birds can turn your day around.

“I am a being of Heaven and Earth, of thunder and lightning, of rain and wind, of the galaxies.” -Eden Ahbez

And you know what?  It didn’t even rain all day.

What simple things keep your day positive?

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Our ever changing lives

 

Change – bad or good, I think can be difficult for anyone.  But I am a Capricorn and we seem to struggle with change.  Over the past several years, I’ve experienced close people in my life leaving.  As in moving away, change of job whatever the case may be.

My best friend from high school moved away to be with her now husband.  She was my BFF, my accountability partner, my workout buddy and my pool side rebel that would sneak in adult beverages to the pool.

A few years later, my BFF at my work moved back to her hometown to be with her sick mother.  We had worked together for 25 years.  Not always in the same department, but the past 14 years or so we worked directly together.  We’ve seen a lot of changes in each others lives.  Marriages, kids growing up, divorces, Spirituality growth, tears and laughter.

The most recent change I am dealing with is my boss is retiring in July.  Some people may jump for joy if their boss was leaving….not me though.  We have worked together, side-by-side, for 28 years.  It doesn’t seem like that long, but it has been.  We also have seen a lot of changes in each others lives.  We have watched each other kids grow to be adults, seen many changes at the workplace, mourned deaths together and the list really does go on.

So what does all this change mean for me and changes you might be going through yourself mean?  Change reminds me of a new beginning.  New things coming to light.  New people coming into our lives.

I like this quote by Gail Sheehy:  “If we don’t change, we don’t grow, if we don’t grow, we aren’t really living.” Boy isn’t THAT the truth!!!

And I found this in the Hebrew Bible – the Book of Ezra 10:4 – “Arise, for it is your task, and we are with you; Be strong and do it.”

James 1:17 – “Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.”

And finally, from Buddha:  “Do not dwell in the past, do not dream of the future, concentrate the mind on the present moment.”

Wow, I think that just hit me square in the face.  The Now.  Stay in the moment.  I think we do spend a lot of time in the past (guilty!!) and equally in the future, right?  Changes come and go, people come and go.  We cannot stop them.

How do you deal with many changes happening at once?

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Be Still….

I always loved this quote from the Christian Bible.  It reminds me that even when things are crazy, or not going well that I need to just stop.  Stop and be still.  What happens when we are still?  Quiet the mind?  Take a deep breath?  We start to focus on the quiet, right?  We can stop the chatter in our minds and just be quiet.  Let Spirit take over.  Be aware of our breathing.  Know you are loved.

“Be still.  Free from fear and attachment, know the sweet joy of living in the way.”  -Buddha

No matter what religion you are, there are references to something similar.  Like the quote above from Buddha.  We can take comfort in letting go and resting in Spirit to provide help, strength and safety.

Quieting the mind takes practice.  One powerful way to quiet the mind is by practising meditation.  Today’s world is busy.  Work, school, taking care of kids, being a chauffeur.  Take time to just stop.  Quiet your mind.  Turn the television off.  Put the phone down.  Take a minute.

Be still – translation of the Hebrew word Rapa:  “to slacken, let down, or cease.”

Know that I am God – know “to properly ascertain by seeing and acknowledge, be aware.”

I like this description I found on bestillsign.com:  “To be still is a conscious state.  A state of mind where all outside forces are removed.  To surrender to the omnipresent.  To be one with the Universe.  A one way line of communication from the powers that be.  Waves of truth.”

I feel like I was supposed to write about this topic today.  Things kept popping up with “be still” in it.  A sticker I used in my planner, a song on the radio on the way to work.  Funny how these things happen.  Or maybe I’m one of the ones that needs to “be still”.  Life has been crazy lately.  Things are changing and I am faced with tough decisions.  A cross-roads if you will.   In closing, I’d like to share with you a poem I found on www.christart.com.  It is by Deborah Ann Belka.

Be Still and Know

Be still and know,

I am the one

Who will finish

What he begun

Be still and know,

I have a plan

So just rest here

In my hand.

Be still and know,

I know the way

I always do

What I say.

Be still and know,

I will not leave,

Believe My peace

You will receive.

Be still and know,

I am with you

Together in this

We’ll get through!

Thank you for reading!

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National Puppy Day!

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OH YES!  Today is National Puppy Day!  National Puppy Day was founded in 2006 by Pet Lifestyle Expert, Animal Behaviorist and Author, Colleen Paige.  Paige is also the founder of National Dog Day and National Cat Day.

 

Not that I need another reason to love on my fur babies, but here are pictures of mine!  Even thought they are not puppies anymore, they are still my babies!

Do you have any puppies?

 

#nationalpuppyday  WOOF!

 

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Courage

 

Greetings my friends,

 

Here is a poem I found about courage:

 

It Takes Courage

Poet Unknown

 

It takes strength to be firm, it takes courage to be gentle.

It takes strength to conquer, it takes courage to surrender.

It takes strength to be certain, it takes courage to have doubt.

It takes strength to fit in, it takes courage to stand out.

 

It takes strength to feel a friend’s pain, it takes courage to feel your own pain.

It takes strength to endure abuse, it takes courage to stop it.

It takes strength to stand alone, it takes courage to lean on another.

It takes strength to love, it takes courage to be loved.

 

It takes strength to survive, it takes courage to live.

 

There are many times throughout our lives where courage is needed.  Like the time as a child you crawled/walked for the first time.  If we could remember this memory I am pretty sure that might have been a scary time for us.  It took courage to take that first step.

 

And as a young child going to Kindergarten for the first time.  I have very vivid memories of this!  At the time we lived in a small city and we walked to school.  My very best friend at the time (Andy) lived a few houses down from us and we were the same age.  I can remember as if it happened yesterday; the anxious feeling of starting school and walking. We had our lunches packed and off we went.  Little did know that both our Mom’s were trailing along not far behind to make sure we made it safely.  It took courage to take that first step.

 

I’m sure that the word courage might mean doing something only other people will do, not you.  Skydiving comes to mind.  No thanks!  No really, no thanks!  But it means something different to everyone.  To one, courage may mean being able to do public speaking, to another it may mean just being able to get out of bed.  All these different levels of courage are important.  Everyone is different, right?

 

I think the poem above really sums it up well.  We need STRENGTH to have the COURAGE.  No matter what it is. Growing up you needed courage to confront the kid that bullied you and caused you to break out in hives on the school bus because you were so nervous and upset.  The courage to be different in a sea of other kids who are all struggling with the same issues.  Perhaps you wore something as a teenager that you knew would different.  That takes courage!  

 

I always wished I had the courage like my parents to be Ministers of Music at a Church when I was growing up.  They were in charge of all the music and had to really put themselves out there.  I guess that is what they majored in in College, but still takes courage.  Singing a solo or playing an instrument in front of a crowd takes courage.  I remember as a little girl playing piano in a recital and how my heart would feel like it was going to burst out of my chest.  But as I went along I actually got lost in my playing and forgot there were people there until I stood up and faced them.  Then I was really glad it was over.  

 

As adults we need to have courage as well.  A young family buying their first home takes courage.  It is scary buying something of that value for the first time.  Starting a family takes courage.  Will I be a good parent?  Will I know how to handle all phases of my child’s life?  As we function in our daily lives at work, or working our home based businesses we need courage.  What if I fail?  What if I don’t get along with my boss?

 

So as we go about our days, let’s all remember that everyone is trying their best – working up the courage to do *something* – whatever that might be.  Another saying I always liked:

 

“Everyone you meet is fighting a battle you know nothing about.  Be kind. Always.”

 

What kinds of things do you need to find the courage to do?

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30 Days of Lists [first week follow-up]

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Hi fellow Lister’s!  How is it going so far?  I am a few days late in getting these posted, but I wanted to share how my first week looks. 
Just in case you missed the first 2 posts, you can catch up here.  
Here we go!!!
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Property of Amber Albright

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Property of Amber Albright
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Property of Amber Albright

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Property of Amber Albright

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Property of Amber Albright

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Property of Amber Albright

I hope you enjoyed my lists!  Let me know if you’re on this journey also and where I can find your lists!  

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