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100 Days of Something….

There many kinds of challenges all over the internet.

Recently a friend told me abut a 100 day challenge for writing poetry.

Her encouragement/challenge to me was to do 100 days of …. something. Anything.

Well they don’t call them “Challenge”s for no reason.

With every valid reason; like a very full calendar,

And every excuse that I can come up with; like I just don’t have enough brain cells,

There is one thing I can say for sure.

That is; No matter how much you think you have to say, and/or share,

There is much more to it than just saying you will do it.

I am learning the art of the scheduled post.

You know, the one that is out there before you are?

Well, on that day any way.

You still have need of being there well before the date.

Mass amounts of ideas and writing that seem to float away as soon as I sit to write.

It’s the age old problem right? Experienced by writers far better than myself. 

But here I am, as one of my favorite bloggers says, “Punching the d__ keys.”

And for my current and future followers, I’ll keep on punching.

My challenge to you ; Will keep keep punching too?

We can do it together; you and I. 

Will you receive this challenge?

Can we help each other to keep the challenge alive!

Spirit Filled Personality

 

As we saw in the previous posts, each personality type has its own strengths and weaknesses.

The neatest thing to know is that God made you just the way you are.

He did not make a mistake.  He wanted you to be uniquely you.  He wanted your special kind of voice in the world.

In His creating of you, He had a certain something in mind for you to do.  He made you for a certain something that only you can accomplish.

Consider with me for just one moment that your special voice is not being heard in the world because of an enemy. 

Consider an enemy of such great malevolence and hatred for your soul that his goal from your very beginning was to silence you. Please consider also, that God’s word says that it is really very true.

Wait a minute!  If this is so, then I don’t stand a chance!  Au contraire!  Quite the opposite!

Beloved, I have one more thing for you to consider.

The God, who made you, gave you a way to rewrite your story.  This God of the universe sent you a love letter, and in this love letter, He told you all you need to know about life and godliness. 

In other words, He’s given you all you need to know about how to make your own special voice heard in the midst of all the others.

Let’s just take one step today.  Shall we? 

In the previous posts about Personality Types, there was a short list of four basic types of personality.  Choleric, Sanguine, Melancholy and Phlegmatic.

Look at the separate traits of each and define which types you mostly find yourself in.  There will probably be two that are the most prominent.

With those two in mind, take a peek at the lists with your two most prominent types.

Look first at the strengths.  See how amazing you are?  No other person is made the exact same way.  You are unique.

Now look at your weaknesses.  See how amazing you still are?  No other person is made the exact same way.  You are unique.

Here’s where the fun begins.  Choose the two weaknesses you dislike the most.  Choose even one if two is too many. 

Choose the smallest one if you need to.  Just choose something.

Now go to Galatians 5:22-23. (NIV)  Or read it here.

22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance (patience), kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control.  Against such things there is no law.

Example;

My major is the choleric.  My chart says that I like to be in charge and am work oriented.  These are not bad things unless taken to the extreme.

In my “taking charge” I can unintentionally run right over the quieter types like the melancholy or phlegmatic, inflicting unintentional damage on them.

Since I like to work, I can actually be doing a task from morning to night without stopping or paying attention to any other duties I may have in my life.

Since I enjoy my work, I can be an aggravation to my family.  They like to chat; they need clean clothes and at times really appreciate being fed.  All of these things are overlooked by me when I’m on a task.

Since I enjoy plans that work, and I know that 99% of the time my plans do work, I can be in charge and be pretty harsh about it. 

Other people don’t care if it works or not if the leader runs ruff-shod over them. 

They tend to run, or at the least, just fade away slowly, leaving me upset to be finishing up alone.

To deal with the control issues, I chose forbearance and gentleness from the list in Galatians.  I chose self-control for my work issues.  Then I prayed.

Lord,

Today I see that I’ve not been too patient or gentle with the people around me.

Please help me to notice what I am doing, and to take time to remember that the way they do the task will still get the task done.

Help me to have self-control, and know when to stop.  Everything does not have to be finished today, but I can have another go at it tomorrow.

I so want the “Fruits of the Spirit” to be evident in my life.

Thank you for your help Lord.

Amen.

 

Studies have proven that it takes twenty one days to break a habit. (These numbers change depending on the study, but the principle is the same)  I believe some take longer. 

I have prayed this prayer or one like it many times.  The change in me began slowly, but has picked up momentum, and my weaknesses are easier to spot (since they do try to return) and easier to stop, now more than ever.

I found after this prayer that I’m actually pretty introverted – I can be both – tied to my work, or in charge.

You will “know in your knower” when you are making progress, and you will also know when it is time to go to another item in the list, and work on it.

Just don’t give up!  Keep on going!

Galatians 6:9   (NIV)

9 Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.

Thanks for joining me in this little series. I hope you have found it helpful in finding how just how you’re wired.

If you would like to ask questions or have further discussions on this topic, feel free to comment, or contact me via IM.

All Your Ducks in a Row?

Thanks for coming back!

Are all your ducks in a row? You could be

Choleric

Strengths

Emotions;

Born leader

Dynamic and active

Compulsive need for change

Must correct wrongs

Strong willed and decisive

Unemotional

Not easily discouraged

Independent and self sufficient

Exudes confidence

Can run anything

As a Parent;

Exerts sound leadership

Establishes goals

Motivates family into action

Knows the right answer

Organizes household

At work;

Goal oriented

Sees the whole picture

Organizes well

Seeks practical solutions

Move quickly into action

Delegates work

Insists on production

Makes the goal

Stimulates activity

Thrives on opposition

As a Friend;

Has little need for friends

Will work for group activity

Will lead and organize

Is usually right

Excels in emergencies

Weakness;

Tend toward being workaholics

They need to learn to relax and not feel guilty about it

They need to be aware that sometimes they pressure others into their way of doing things

They need to plan leisure activity

Have the need to be in control

Helps;

They need to learn to respond to other leadership

They need to be careful not to look down on “The Dummies”

They need to learn to stop manipulating

Don’t know how to handle people

They need to practice patience

They need to keep their advice until it is asked for

They need to tone down their approach

They need to stop arguing and causing trouble

Are right, but unpopular

They need to let someone else be right

They need to learn to apologize

They need to admit to their faults

Do you see yourself?

If not,

stay tuned for more on other personality strengths and weaknesses!

I Did It Backwards

Who are you? Who do you want to be? Do you know, really? 

Or are you like many others, and just feel a lot of confusion about that?

Not only do you not know who you are, but you can’t help but listen when others try and convince you who THEY think you should be.

I did it backwards.  It took forty plus years to get here.  I’d love it if I could save you all that time and trauma by helping you to start in the right order.

I spent a lifetime trying to figure out what I was and where I was.  What I didn’t realize is that I first had to know WHO I was.

So won’t you join me for the next five posts, where we’ll look at some different personality types, and how they apply to you.

Finding out about these was a super helpful step for me.

I know exactly who I am; I also know that I keep growing and changing into a more fully developed me.

I invite you to come along for Cliffs Notes version look at your personality.

See you next time.

 

Contrast, Shadows, and Rest

Spring time brings different things to different people.

For you it may be happiness for the ability to be outside, working in the yard, or on your car, or riding on the bike path, training your animal in the yard, or it could be just a good old fashioned porch sitting.

However you celebrate the coming of Spring – enjoy it with all your heart, with all your being, for it is truly a gift.

Today I’d like to share with you a fresh new video. It shows yet another way to look at in the Spring

After the harshness of winter, with it’s stark colors, and temps that chill us to the bone, it’s nice to be able to relax with a soft breeze touching our face instead of frigid arctic air.

The thing I enjoy noticing the most though, is the contrast between light and shadow; between the vibrant greens and pinks of Spring.

To me, the shadows seem deeper, and the colors more vibrant after the long and mostly dreary winter we have experienced.

Many of you were there, so I know you felt it too.

Those of you who know me, know that I am an advocate for what I call “Quietude”. I enjoy using my little videos to catch a few moments of rest.

Sometimes that is all you need. A dose at a time, taken as needed, can bring clarity to your mind.

The video I’ve created today shows just a hint of the contrasts and shadows we spoke together about.

Please take just three and a half minutes to watch the video, and restfully consider what you like best about Spring.

Now that you’re back, would you care to share the thoughts that came to your mind?

I’d love to know! What do YOU notice about Spring? What do YOU like best?

Are You Hearing Voices?

I’ve gotten out of the habit of hearing His voice.

I have some questions here;

First of all – Who is “He”?

Nehemiah 9:6 from the Holy Bible says this; “You are the Lord, you alone. You have made heaven, the heaven of heavens, with all their host, the earth and all that is on it, the seas and all that is in them; and you preserve all of them; and the host of heaven worships you.

If that’s the case, and I believe it is, then that is a voice I really want to hear!

Why do I want to hear His voice?

Beginning to hearing His voice, for me anyway, began with an intense longing inside of me to find out what more there could possibly be to my life.

You know, the life that goes through the same cycles of disbelief, low self esteem, caring so much what others think, at my own expense.

Expensive, because the voices I was hearing were telling me just how worthless I was. I had a longing to hear just one good thing about myself that I could hang my hat on. Something I could believe and hold on to.

That longing wanted to know who I was; all the while knowing that I could believe a lie, just as easily as I could believe the truth.

To avoid the lie, I had to find the right voice. There are cacophonies of voices out there just trying to be heard. Which one is the right one?

I believe it’s the maker of heaven and earth!

How do you hear His voice in the first place?

In order to sort through that longing, there has to be quiet.

Now MY quiet, will likely be different than yours.

When I want to get to this place of hearing, I require three things.

  1. Absolute quiet.
  2. My Bible.  
  3. A pad of paper and a writing utensil.

The absolute quiet is to get my mind off of everything that distracts. Even lovely music can be distracting. (I’m finding that now even while writing this)

I need my Bible. It has a great concordance (an alphabetical list of the words present in a text, usually with citations of the passages concerned.) in the back, so I can look up scripture by words or topics. I can search out any topic that is on my heart.

Then I can meditate on this word.

This meditation is not the same as emptying the space between my ears. Instead, it fills up all the empty space inside, by telling me the truth; about me, about God, about my life; past, present and future.

The pad of paper? My brain is notorious for running me off in a different direction while I’m trying to concentrate on being quiet. Anything that pops into my head and interrupts gets written down.

It’s safe on that paper, I won’t forget. I’ll pick it up later.

It’s calming, when you know you won’t forget every little nuance at it passes by your brain.

How do you continue to hear His voice?

I hear his voice by being quiet enough to let the words I’ve read roll around in my heart and mind.

I let them roll until they make sense. Until they become real to me.

I really dislike the way the word meditation is used in some forums. I’m speaking of the meditation on God’s word, and what it means to me. Not meditation that is emptying my mind. That is a whole different thing.

Instead, I prefer a meditation that asks; What do these words say? What do they mean to me? How can I put them into practice?

Once you have hear His voice, you will recognize it when you hear it again. John 10:27 says clearly; My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me.

Wow. He knows me – I want to know His voice!

How do you get back to it again after being away?

The dangerous part is in the drifting away. You release the habit for a day, and then a week, and then a month. No big, drastic changes.

You still hear His voice. But here’s the catch; after a month, the voice gets quieter, and you realize (maybe) that you have been going on memory, and that you haven’t “heard” anything new for quite some time.

Memory, like muscles, can get flat after periods of not being used.

Notice, the first thing I said was that it is a habit. It is most definitely a habit.

The first step to take is to get back to your DAILY reading. It need not be chapter upon chapter. Just a few paragraphs maybe.

We used to have a pastor who told us to “Read till you burn.” That sounds funny coming from a pastor, whose job is to insure that you don’t burn 🙂

But what he was trying to tell us, was that we needed to read the word until something came alive in our heart; until our heart caught that spark.

When that happens – You’re hearing God’s voice. He is speaking to you.

I’ve read the same thing several times over my lifetime, and then one time I will read it, and it is like the words jumped right off the page.

They bring something to life in me. They spark a realization in me about _________________! Whatever it is I’m reading about.

When I begin to roll those verses around in my heart and mind, they become a part of me. My soul and my spirit; my insides; are renewed. I can see an action that needs to be taken, or a mind set that needs to be tweeked.

James 1:22-25 (ICB) says this; Do what God’s teaching says; do not just listen and do nothing. When you only sit and listen, you are fooling yourselves. A person who hears God’s teaching and does nothing is like a man looking in a mirror. He sees his face, then goes away and quickly forgets what he looked like. But the truly happy person is the one who carefully studies God’s perfect law that makes people free. He continues to study it. He listens to God’s teaching and does not forget what he heard. Then he obeys what God’s teaching says. When he does this, it makes him happy.

This quiet time, this hearing His voice; it gives me peace, and it carries with me throughout my days.

It makes it so that even the harshest of circumstances can be faced with some sort of calm, peace and joy.