Saturday, March 28, 2009

What ever happened to kindness?

Yesterday I took my mom to the doctor's office. Actually we went to two different doctor's offices... for a total of 3 1/2 hours. We could have been grumpy about that... but we weren't. While we were at one office.... we had seen the doctor, and we were waiting to get bloodwork done. We were sitting in a little tiny waiting room with two other people. One lady... and one man. The lady told us all about her struggles with needing to pay the balance on her account before they would see her... a whopping $3.25. She shook the change in her pocket to show us that she had brought it. I think she shared this with us because they would not go ahead and allow me to make my husband an appointment while I was there... because he owed them $15 for missing an appointment. I didn't even take my purse with me... this was my mom's appointment. Anyway... a nurse appeared out of the back to tell the lady that the doctor would see her now.... as they started off... the little man stood up and said, "please... before the doctor goes in to see her... please have him sign a prescription for me to get a new glucometer... mine is broken and I haven't been able to check my blood sugar for over 24 hours". To which the nurse made some comment below her breath... and walked away.

This man started a conversation with my mom... and they realized that they were in school together. This meant that the man was about 73 years old. He said that he had been waiting for 1 1/2 hours to just get a piece of paper saying that he could get a new glucometer. He was a little vocal about his situation to my mom.... but he wasn't asking for the world... just a signed prescription that would allow the pharmacy to sell him a new glucometer.

Then... out of no where... a new person came up to the desk and called the little man up. She handed him a prescription for his glucometer... but proceeded to lay him out with her words. She said as loud as she could...

"you can't just walk in here and think that the doctor is going to drop everything he is doing just to get you a prescription.... you should have called first!!"

she then said.... " you said your glucometer broke yesterday... you had time to call us about this... you can't think we are going to just drop everything and take care of your needs because you walk in the door!"

He tried to explain that he was out of town when his glucometer broke... and he just came back to town and stopped by there. She was not taking that either.... she continued to just fuss at him.... she then told him.... "this is not the first time you have done this.... you have done this before!!"

He just hung his little head and said, "okay.... " took his prescription... and walked out the door.

I was fuming. What is the world has made people think that they can treat others any way they please?? I just don't get it!! I felt so bad for that little man.... You know... the thing is that in "his day" you could just walk into your doctor's office... who knew you by name.... and knew your family.... and talk directly to him. You wouldn't have even had to deal with a huge staff of meanies.

I don't know anything about the people in this office... besides the fact that they are not kind... nor flexible. I don't know where they stand with the Lord. But I can tell you what kind of fruit is on their tree.

Matthew 12:33 says this,
"Make a tree good and its fruit will be good, or make a tree bad and its fruit will be bad, for a tree is recognized by its fruit."

Oh... I want my fruit to be worthy of my Father. I want others to see fruit on my tree that is good.

There was another conversation that I was a part of the other morning at work. Several people were talking about a co-worker that talked ugly to them on a regular basis. When they were describing him... and I decided that I did know who they were talking about. He was the one that I was "short" with one time. Only.... conviction hit me so hard that I searched for him later that morning but couldn't find him.... so the next time I worked, I apologized to him. Needless to say... He was shocked that I would come and apologize for such a "small thing". His words... not mine. Not God's. He let me know in no uncertain terms that I was out of line.... my fruit wasn't lining up with my tree. I am sure that there are other times that my fruit doesn't line up. But that is not what I want. I want to be the REAL DEAL. When I told my co-workers about my apology to him... they ranted that they wouldn't apologize... they are just ugly back to him....

I so want to be the real deal. I want my fruit to be sweet and lead others to my Father. So tell me..... what makes you the real deal??

***It is almost my blogaversary.... leave a comment and I will choose one person to receive a gift.... I will draw on Tuesday, March 31st. If you don't have a blog... just leave a comment under anonymous... and include your name and email address.*****

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Thursday, March 26, 2009

Let's go grocery shopping

Okay... after my last post that included my addictions.... I have gotten several questions about the grocery game. Ladies... it is so easy! The grocery game is a website that helps you match up sales and current coupons to get the absolute best deal on your grocery purchases. I have been doing this for a little over a year maybe.... and I promise it works. All it takes is a little bit of time... and the coupons that come in Sunday's newspaper. And... the space to put all of the "stuff".

My family is so sweet... I don't even purchase my own newspaper. My dad buys me one every Sunday while he is buying his. He buys the "big" paper in our area. Then my mother gives me the ones that come out of our "smaller" local paper. My aunt gives me her coupons as well. So... each week I usually end up with 3 sets of coupons. If I stay caught up, it takes me about one hour on Sunday afternoon to cut and organize my coupons. If I told you that I have a HUGE 3 ring binder full of coupons would you believe me?? I do. It is full of baseball card holder sheets (6 per sheet). Each different coupon has its own holder. If I have 3 of the same coupon... they go in the same sleeve.

You do have to pay a small fee to be a member of the grocery game. For example.... I get the list from 4 different grocery stores and it cost be $25 every 8 weeks. Now... at first glance, that may seem like a lot. But today alone... I saved $90 at Harris Teeter. So... that is at one store in just one day. My original bill was $215. With my VIC card and coupons, I ended up paying $124. Just imagine how much I save at 4 stores in 8 weeks. That $25 fee is back in my pocketbook in less than one trip to a grocery store.

My usual savings are at least 50% or more. The trick is that you buy more than one of an item at an extremely low price.... stockpile it.... and you never have to pay full price for it. Does that make sense?? If not.... please visit the website. It is so self-explanatory.

They offer a 4 week trial for only $1. You can get the list for every store in your area for that $1. BUT please don't sign up to do a trial until you have saved your coupons for at least 4 to 6 weeks. That way.... you will have some, if not most, of the coupons that they have on the list.

It is an absolute "high" to walk out of a store with tons of groceries for a small amount of money. I bet you didn't know this... but if you save "too much" money on your bill, the cashier actually has to call the manager to override the sale. They have to call for the "key". Now... that is too cool. It happened to me today.

Many times you can get items for free. I am pretty sure that we have enough toothpaste to do us til Jesus comes back!! Shampoo and conditioner too. At any given time... I usually have at least 60 rolls of toilet paper. We have enough bathroom spray to repaint the neighborhood... if it were paint. Cleaning supplies.... well... you would think that my house would be spotless. But it isn't.

I urge you to give it a try... if you have the space for the stock. Unless... of course you have more money than you know what to do with.

And... if you decide to sign up... please put me down as your reference. You will need my email address. You can either leave me a comment... or check my profile page. I can earn free weeks for referring you. Any more questions????? Just ask.

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Tuesday, March 24, 2009

A very needed blessing

After my last post... which was just yesterday... I really needed a blessing. And God, in His wonderful faithfulness, showed up and gave me one. My sweet new bloggy friend Cricket at A Simple Girls Life gave me an award. I'm pretty sure that I didn't deserve it... but God, in His unbelievable grace, allowed me to receive it. Wow! What a blessing.

The funniest thing is that they used my body for the picture.... NOT! And I am quite sure that "Fabulous" is the overstatement of the year... but I am still blessed none the less.

There are only two rules to follow after accepting this award and they are...

1. Confess 5 things you are addicted to.
2. Pass the award on to 5 deserving bloggers.

I think this may have been a trap... to see my dark side... but since it shows most of the time anyway, especially yesterday... here goes.

1. Starbucks. I hate to admit that I pay that much for a cup of steamed milk and some expresso... but it is the truth. I do... actually, as often as I can. The great thing is that my bank gives points for using your debit card as a credit card... which I do obsessively... and use my points to get Starbucks gift cards. Free makes it taste even better.

2.The Grocery Game. I am so addicted to clipping coupons and saving money at the grocery store. I usually pay HALF or LESS for my groceries when all is said and done. It is better than using drugs.... it is such a "high".

3. My Tuesdays. This is my sweet little group of ladies that come over on Tuesday nights to study God's Word. These ladies bless me so much with their desire to know God. They keep me so excited. Which leads to another one of my addictions....

4. Bible study. I can't get enough. I am quite a Beth Moore junkie... but I do others as well. I not only do written studies... I love to listen to teaching CDs or sermon CDs in the car. I want to know God as deeply as I can here. I want as much of Him as I can get here.

5. And... Facebook. I have decided that I have an addictive personality. Anything that comes along seems to get me... It is just so easy to take a quick peek into your friends lives... see what they are up to... and it doesn't seem to take me as long as it does to post on my blog.

Now... this is what I am addicted to at this moment. It is possible for some of these to change without notice... although everything but Facebook has been around quite a while. There are also things like index cards, DoveTruffle eggs, praise music, my family, my friends, Sonic, and the list goes on..... I must just have quite an addictive personality.

And I want to give this same award to these people because their blogs bless me:

Libby at Daily Tidbits

Pamela at The Pinkshoe Lady

Susan at RunnerMom

Pamela at In His Graces

JeanMac at A Mountain too High

Check out these blogs... you will be blessed as well. Thank you to Cricket. Thank you God for your blessings.

ALSO... my one year Blogiversery is coming up.... check back later this week for a giveaway! And it won't be long until my 100th post.... another giveaway!

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Monday, March 23, 2009

Struggles with flesh....

I love it when God answers my prayers... just like I had hoped He would. But... it sure is a bummer when He decides to do things His way. I have been dreading this day for about three weeks now. I have prayed about it many, many, many times. This morning... I just bombarded His throne with my request. My request soon turned to begging. I so needed Him to intervene in this certain situation. For many different reasons... one for simplicities sake. Another for my daughter and her peace of mind. Another one for the other people that would be involved. But I soon realized that the biggest reason was my pride. Yippie.... those pride panties again. I thought I tried to take those off this morning. I so wanted to be more concerned and compassionate for my daughter and the others involved. But seeing how my flesh jumped in there and reacted.... and think it was my pride that won out. Gee, I really hate it when I do that.

I am so comforted by Paul's struggle with sin. In Romans 7:15 Paul says this...

"I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do... I do not do, but what I hate... I do.

My reactions and attitude certainly prove his next statement...

"I know that nothing good lives in me, that is in my sinful nature. For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out."

"When I want to do good, evil is right there with me. For in my inner being I delight in God's law; but I see another law at work in the members of my body, waging war at work within my members. What a wretched man I am!! Who will rescue me from this body of death?? "

Then my favorite part....

"Thanks be to God- through Jesus Christ our Lord."

I am so glad that Paul had this struggle. I am so glad that he was obedient enough to tell us about it.

Can I just say that I will still bless the Lord even though this day didn't turn out like I had hoped. After my fit... and my tears... and my bad attitude.... Jesus is still there... waiting to make me whole again. Thanks be to God!

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Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Swept clean and put in order...

Last week was a busy week for me. It started on Monday when my mom was put into the hospital. She is fine now, resting at home... ... but it just made it busy just the same. I didn't just go sit there everyday like I should have... or like I would want someone else to do if it were me in the hospital. But I constantly felt the pull to hurry what I was doing so that I could go up there to be with her. Wednesday morning she had a procedure that required me to go and sit in a waiting room for an extended period of time.... So I loaded up my Bible and my Bible study workbook and off I went.

The waiting room was practically full when I got there. I found myself a chair over to one side... and plopped down. I opened up my Bible study workbook, got out my three different colored highlighters, my ink pen, and my Bible. I started reading in Luke 11:17-26. I am usually distracted if I try to do my Bible study when other things are going on around me... but not this time. Although there were a lot of others around... it seemed like it was just me and God. I know I even made some noises while I was reading... you know... uhmm... uh huh... wooo... I would catch myself letting these noises escape... and just grin to myself.

Anyway... this is just one part that spoke volumes to me...

"When an evil spirit comes out of a man, it goes through arid places seeking rest and does not find any. Then it says, 'I will return to the house I left.' When it arrives, it finds the house swept clean and put in order. Then it goes and takes seven other spirits more wicked than itself, and they go in and live there. And the final condition of that man is worse than the first."

I know this to be true. There was a time about 8 years ago that God really did a work in my heart about being in bondage to something. Through His work and my work.... I was free for about 3 or 4 years. Free. Swept clean and put in order just like the house in the scripture above. The problem is... I didn't permanently fill that empty space up with something else. I did for a while. But... then I fell back into old patterns... thinking that I was free... I let myself think about other things. Now... I realize that not only did the evil spirit move back in... he brought all his buddies with him... because I seem to be having a much harder time getting free this time. It seems so easy for me to fall back into the old patterns after a day or two of being obedient. I wish that I had moved some permanent furniture into that cleaned up space.

When we take a negative out of our lives.... we must turn around and fill it with something positive. Otherwise... there is a gaping cleaned up and put in order space sitting there just waiting on something to fill it. Our enemy is more than happy to find something to fill up that space. That is probably why people that are trying to stop smoking take up something else... like chewing gum or eating lollipops.

The enemy also knows that if we have tasted a little bit of freedom... like the 3 or 4 years that I did.... I am going to want to be there again. Therefore he brings his buddies with him so that it will be much harder this time around. He doesn't want to lose... again. Unfortunately.... he does knows the end of the story. He is going to lose. Big time. And he will do whatever he can to keep us in bondage before he loses. I love this scripture....

"His heart is secure, he will have no fear;
in the end he will look in triumph on his foes" Psalm 112:8

He is going to be the big loser. We will look in triumph over him in the end.... Now... if I can just get him out of my house again.

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Sunday, March 8, 2009

Springing Forward

Gee... it has been a long time since I posted. I think facebook has taking over my life. I cannot believe how quickly you (that is really "I") can get addicted to something. Anyway....

Today is the day that we had to spring our clocks forward one hour. There is just nothing like losing a whole hour of sleep. How ironic that I often feel like I lose whole hours during my day while I do something silly..... but that doesn't seem to have the same effect on me. I really need to re-think that. I just thought of that.... it wasn't even the reason for this post.

I just had a birthday.... I am right at my "mid" forties now. (How exciting...) But.... yet my sweet mother called me three times yesterday to remind me to move my clock ahead when I went to bed last night. I even got another message from a friend reminding me to do the same thing. (You know who you are.....) When I told my husband about it yesterday afternoon.... He just looked at me and said, "Do they think we are just stupid?" We got a good laugh from it.

While I got my family ready for church this morning... I started thinking. I am sure that I will never stop being their mom either. I will probably call them and remind them to move their clock ahead just like my mom did. I will probably call them to remind them of all kinds of things... not because they are stupid... but because I'm the Moma THAT"S WHY! I don't think that I will be able to stop being the mom... just because they are in their mid forties.... or fifties for that matter. Somehow it really made me grin to think about my mom then.... How blessed am I that she still wants to be my "mom". Blessed I tell you!!

Then I thought about how God reminds my heart of things during the day... sometimes during the night too. How He loves me. How He is paying attention to what is going on in my day. How He lets me hear the birds sing to Him in the morning so that I can join in their praise. How He sends me a love note in the middle of my Bible reading. How He gently nudges me when I am about to oversleep. Thankfully He never stops being my Father. His desire to parent me never ends.

My phone just rang... I smiled as I headed for it. I laughed and said... "Mom, I love you." But... the joke was on me. It was for my son. Oh well....

Thanks Father for being my Father. Thanks for giving me a mom that still parents me. Thanks for also reminding me that you have blessed me with the opportunity to do the same thing.

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