Planted By God to Display His Glory -Isaiah 61:3

Posts tagged ‘God’

Rewind 1 Year: Bad Days Happen

Bad Days Happen

(This was originally posted on February 8, 2011, and it’s an amazing thing that God led me back to it tonight, February 8, 2012. Tomorrow I am going in for knee surgery, another step toward my healing from the injury that has sidetracked my life for 2 1/2 years now. I needed to read this tonight. I need to keep my perspective on the right things–the things of God. May it bless you today, whether it’s your first or second time reading it. Tomorrow’s going to be a good day, I just know it!)

I had a good day last week. Followed by a bad day. Followed by a moderately bad day, which was followed by a moderately good day. None of which were caused by my choice to quit caffeine last week.

This is just how I rate my life these days. Good, bad, and the moderate ones in-between. It’s become a habit, and another one (like the caffeine) that I’d like to break. But it’s tough, because I’ve been at it for over a year now, ever since that one very bad day happened.

Have you experienced one of those? I bet you have, and whatever your story is, I pray for you…because I know the pain. Literally. For me it’s been coping with unrelenting physical pain, but I know for others it can be unrelenting emotional pain. And so we rate our days: good, bad, and in-between…

On the good days I will call you and chat and maybe even go to the movies. On the bad days you won’t see or hear from me. Only my family sees, but I even try to hide the pain from them. So they won’t start rating their days good or bad based upon mine.

What really got me thinking about how I rate my days was an article I read last week by my favorite writer called 8 ½ Steps to Make it Through the Moderately-Worst Day of Your Life. It made me laugh but also gave me a good dose of God’s grace and hope:

“Even on days when absolutely nothing is going your way, and you watched your toast walk off the plate and jump to the ground butter-side-down, there is something you can control. You. Your outlook, your attitude and your level of optimism.” 

Yup, I can control me. I can control what I choose to focus on and what I choose to believe. And when I make the right choices my best days are the ones when God gets the attention instead of the pain:

“Give your entire attention to what God is doing right now, and don’t get worked up about what may or may not happen tomorrow. God will help you deal with whatever hard things come up when the time comes.” Matthew 6:34 (The Message)

“Give my attention to what God is doing right now”…right now. Today, this moment, and every moment, pain or no pain, God is working in me. Working good things. Things that can only be formed in the heat of the furnace of my pain. And I’m a better person because of that.

So I won’t give up. And neither should you:

“So we’re not giving up. How could we! Even though on the outside it often looks like things are falling apart on us, on the inside, where God is making new life, not a day goes by without his unfolding grace. These hard times are small potatoes compared to the coming good times, the lavish celebration prepared for us. There’s far more here than meets the eye. The things we see now are here today, gone tomorrow. But the things we can’t see now will last forever.” 2 Corinthians 4:16-18 (The Message)

Not a day goes by… I’m going to endeavor to stop rating my days good or bad based on my pain, and instead rate them all good based on God’s unending grace and love, and His promise for the blessings of my future. Besides, as my favorite author says:

“Bad days happen, but after they are over–that’s just it. They are over. Don’t give a bad day more recognition than it deserves, because it doesn’t deserve any. Stupid bad days.”

Stupid bad days indeed.

Have a good day!   🙂

                   -Linda

By the way, in case you were wondering, my favorite author happens to be Sarah Elizabeth Crawford. Who, in addition to ministering to her Mom, speaks to teen girls through her articles in SUSIE magazine. And you betcha I think she is great!

Copyright Linda Crawford, Sunny Side Up (not scrambled) 2012. All rights reserved.

What Am I Fishing For?

What Am I Fishing For?

I think this picture could sum up my life. First it was love, then a little good fortune and money to survive. Later I went fishing for some recognition in my work, and finally, after many failures at those, I saw the value of fishing for my faith.

But even though I caught it, the fishing never stopped. Sometimes I still fish for love, fortune and fame. And in the midst of everyday life, the triumphs and the sorrows, I am constantly fishing for more faith.

So…I put the worm on the hook again…and what am I fishing for today?

All of the above.

Good thing Jesus is teaching me to fish and holds the pole with me. That way we reel in the catch of the day I REALLY need.

Which just might be joy for the journey.

What are you fishing for today?

“You parents—if your children ask for a loaf of bread, do you give them a stone instead? Or if they ask for a fish, do you give them a snake? Of course not! So if you sinful people know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give good gifts to those who ask him.” Matthew 7:9-11 NLT

[I decided to do my own version of Five Minute Friday today and would love for you to join me! Look at the picture above, write your own five-minute story, and post it in the comments. Have fun!]

© Linda Crawford, Sunny Side Up (not scrambled), 2011.  All rights reserved.

Fret and Faith Colored Glasses

I was fretting.

Justifiably so. A once in a lifetime opportunity was about to occur and we were going to miss it.

It was thirty minutes until the last solar eclipse of the century, and my husband, daughter, and I were stuck in a traffic jam on the outskirts of Vienna, Austria. Only miles from the total eclipse zone, traffic was barely moving and I was grinding my teeth in frustration.

Click here to read the rest of my amazing God story at Internet Cafe Devotions today!

~Linda

It’s a Red Shoes Day!

I  have my red shoes, do you?

Today I’m sharing my story of how God transformed me from a black, brown and boring shoe Christian into a red shoe one!

To read A Red Shoes Day click on the red shoe picture or this link: Internet Cafe Devotions

And you if you follow the instructions at the bottom of the devotion you can win a free copy of this devotional book my story was published in too!

That’s right, the title is  “God So Loved the World…That He Created Chocolate”

 

God, red shoes, and chocolate! Yup, it’s going to be a great day!

 

~Linda

Daffodils and Destiny

Bright and brilliant yellow, my four daffodil blooms SHOUT from my corner garden at the world…“Look at us! We’re the first and brightest blooms of Spring!”

I love them. I have only four this year, but hundreds blossomed in unison along the front edge of my childhood home in Maine. After a dark and gloomy New England winter, they were my lifeline to the future—the first hope of sun and Spring.

It’s amazing to me how these hardy bulbs bloom year after year, but only after spending time hidden, in the cold hard ground of winter with no sunshine at all.

Like me. At least it feels that way. It’s been a cold hard winter in my life as I’ve struggled to recover from an injury that gives me almost constant pain and severely limits my activity. At times over the last eighteen months I’ve wondered if I would ever see the sunshine of hope. Yet now I wouldn’t trade any of those dark days for some man-made premature spring. Because God’s been doing miraculous things deep inside me as I’ve been hidden. Working on my heart, my pride, my insecurities, my faults, and my fear.

Jesus even told us we must be willing to be buried in the ground:

“Listen carefully: Unless a grain of wheat is buried in the ground, dead to the world, it is never any more than a grain of wheat. But if it is buried, it sprouts and reproduces itself many times over. In the same way, anyone who holds on to life just as it is destroys that life. But if you let it go, reckless in your love, you’ll have it forever, real and eternal.” John 12:24 (The Message) 

There’s a transforming work that could only take place as I’ve been buried deep in the ground with Jesus. A place of surrender that I would never have discovered without the pain, the darkness, and the alone-ness of it all. I could not hold onto life the way it had been. I had to let it go, and trust recklessly in the love of Jesus to bring me new life.

Nobody’s really been able to see yet what’s been happening in my underground place with God, but eventually I pray the bloom of the love of Jesus will burst through the ground so I can show off His glory! Then I’ll shout “Hey, look at Jesus! He’s the first and brightest bloom of life!

Wait a minute…I’m shouting it out to you now! Maybe you’ve experienced a dark and hidden time in your life. Be encouraged, God can work miraculous transformations underground.  It’s your destiny and mine to one day break free and become the beauty we are meant to be!

A dear friend knows me so well, she made the artwork below for my birthday present last month. She made it for me, but it’s also from God for you.

I pray you are as blessed as I am by the heart and art of my incredible friend Becky Schultea.   

Thanks for the daffodil blooms you share with me just by being here! 

            -Linda

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