Monthly Archives: July 2011

Grateful for Encouragement


Encouragement makes such a difference in how we are able to keep on keeping on amidst the dailyness of life.

Therefore today’s Friday’s Fave Five will express gratitude for the encouragement I receive.

I am grateful for the encouragement I get from . . .

1. Medical people – I have been discouraged because my physical therapist and doctor said that I would not get much range-of-motion after 3 months (from the time of the break in my shoulder). It is now 2 weeks past that 3 month date and my shoulder is still quite restricted. And I am unwilling to accept that diagnosis.

A friend of a friend is a physical therapist. Last week this physical therapist spoke with me and said. “Do not give up! I have seen improvements, huge improvements, up to 1 1/2 years after an injury or surgery.” And she said this wasn’t an isolated case.

Yesterday I went to a CMT (2nd time) and as he was working on me he said, “Oh, I can tell you haven’t felt good for a very long time. We can change that!” Now that’s what I want to hear. Encouragement. A little sympathy goes a long way too. 😉

2. Work – My boss is very supportive of what I do and isn’t shy about expressing encouragement and giving me ideas to follow-up on. Our office manager is a gem when it comes to helping out the staff. Twice in the past week she has designed something for me. It looks so good. I know that people will pay attention because of the professional quality of her work.

3. Friends – Isn’t it encouraging to have friends …. Who share their bounty of fresh fruits and veggies? Who can meet up with you for an unexpected coffee-run? Who at the end of a phone call say, “May I pray for you before we hang up?” Who are new bloggy friends and send you a postcard from their vacation?

4. Study partner – My 15-year-old niece and I have put in 7 hours (right, K?) studying together. She is studying for AP classes that start mid-August. I have been mainly writing/reading for consecration. (Although a few hours did go towards a work project.) Having this regular time with K has encouraged me to stay focused and to put in the time towards consecration. The snacks are helpful too.

5. The Word – Each week I study a different book of the Bible for our 66 Love Letters small group. This week’s book is I Kings. I am seeing again and again how much God loves me (you) and how patiently He helps me (you) live a right life. It encourages me to know that He won’t give up on me (you).

Want to share your gratitude about the encouragements from your week? Do so in the comments or link your post to Susanne’s weekly meme at her site Living to Tell the Story.


CNC Ladies to Learn from Priscilla Shirer Oct. 28-29


Last year 13 ladies and I attended a Beth Moore simulcast at Fair Oaks Presbyterian Church (FOPC). We all enjoyed being together. Because I wanted to experience this great learning and fellowship time again, I called FOPC to see when the next event is happening.

I was told that they and other churches in the area are going to hear Priscilla Shirer speak. Priscilla is giving in person talks at Capital Christian Center Friday, October 28- Saturday, Oct 29. The topic is “Because God Wants to Meet You Where You Are.” Anthony Evans will lead us in musical worship.

Why don’t we go as a group like we did last year? We can carpool, eat together, learn and worship side-by-side.

I will order tickets on Wednesday, August 24. Sign up and get the $39 to me by Sunday, August 21. Make your checks payable to CNC and put Priscilla Shirer tickets in the memo line.

Of course you can buy your own tickets. But be sure to RSVP to me so that we know to look for you at the event or wait for you at our church to carpool.

If you buy your ticket before August 29th, the cost is $39.00 After August 29 the price increases by $10.00.

Looking forward to hearing from you, Pastor Susan Wright (635-5992 x14 or

For more information about this event go to Lifeway.

Are you joining us for this awesome event?

5 Silly Reasons for Gratitude


Are you part of Friday’s Fave Five? What kinds of things do you express gratitude for? I have been participating  for almost a year. At first I talked about the majour reasons for my gratitude. Now I am looking for the more uncommon things that bring joy and gratitude to my heart.

This week’s list is 5 silly reasons to be grateful.

1. Too Young. I was having a meeting with a college student. We were sharing info about our lives and I mentioned I had 2 adult children, 27 & 28 years old. A stunned expression came upon her face as she said, “I didn’t think you were old enough to have kids that old!” This surprised me especially since I have a 2-inch stripe of gray hair growing on the crown of my head.

2. Potent Kiss. Last Sunday at church I walked into the PreK room to find J sitting on the teacher’s lap c-r-y-i-n-g! I got down to his level and asked what was wrong. While pointing to his 3-year-old finger and between sobs, J said, “sob, he sob, sob hurt, sob, my finger, sob, sob.” I quietly asked him if I could kiss it. J nodded yes and put his finger to my lips. After a couple of kisses, J smiled, jumped down off the teacher’s lap, and happily joined a group of kids.

3. Great Musculature. While I was getting some body work done, the therapist said several times that I have great musculature. Evidently this is mainly congenital and genetic. The bad thing is if ever I get hanged, my neck muscles are so strong that it would take a while before I ceased to breathe.

4. Slim Ankles. Last week I wore a pair of capri jeans. Several women (who are style-conscious) told me the look was very flattering and I could pull it off because I have slim ankles. Wow – I didn’t know I had slim anything!

5. Five Minutes of Procrastination. This week one of my nieces and I have been studying together. She is getting work done for high school and I am doing work for consecration. On our first day, we were well fortified with snacks (there was some healthy food too), and had all our supplies in order. I opened up the Word document for the book report I’ve been procrastinating on for months. I typed and typed and typed and typed until I was done. Yes DONE . . . in FIVE minutes!!!! I didn’t realize I was so close to being finished.

Your Turn . . . What “silly” things are in your life that bring you gratitude? Share in the comments, on Facebook, or at your own blog. Thanks, Susanne from Living to Tell the Story, for heading up this weekly meme.

Using your Name to Spell Gratitude


How many ways have you expressed gratitude? I have expressed gratitude in many ways. Some of these ways were through . . .

Today at RevGalBlogPals we are asked to do the following for Friday Five:

A wise person once told me to make an ABC list of things I am grateful for any time I feel sad or depressed. It is a good practice when one is feeling happier than that, too. So for this Friday Five, I suggest that you use your name or nickname of about five letters and express your gratitude about something that starts with each letter. Some people have longer names, so you decide how you will go about this! (Last names, middle names, and nicknames count!)

Here’s my name, Susan, as a gratitude list.

S – Sunshine. I woke up this morning thinking how grateful I am for the sunshine. (I am not too grateful for HEAT!) The sunshine invigorates me, makes me healthy (vitamin D), grows my plants, and makes life seem happier.

U – Underwater. I have been doing many of my physical therapy exercises underwater this week. The pool water is kinda cool, but once I get going, the water temp feels fine. Doing the exercises in the water is a change (I get bored easily with exercises), I can do more without hurting myself, and it is more fun since I pretend I am a mermaid. (I recently watched the series H2O: Just Add Water. Very cute.)

S – Sounds. Or really the lack of sounds. I live in a (usually) quiet apartment complex. When I am surrounded by too much noise I get cranky. So I really appreciate the consistent solitude  my home offers.

A – Animal. Chip is my animal companion. He is a miniature toy poodle who has lived with me 13 years. He is 19 years old, blindish (cataracts), deaf (or really good at ignoring me), and arthritic. This week Chip has been more feeble, tending to fall over way too easily. I am grateful for his constant affection towards me, his playful nature, and his determined spirit (which at other times I call stubbornness and then I am not grateful).

N – Never. I have been contemplating on and grateful for the facts that God will never forsake me, never forget me, never let me be snatched out of His Hands, and never let me die (spiritually).

 Your Turn . . . Use your name as a way to express gratitude. Share it here, on Facebook, or on your own blog.
Related Posts . . .

Recounting Blessings from a Reluctant Heart Improves My Mood


Ever have a week where you are reluctantly grateful? That’s where I am at this week. Nothing really bad has happened. No major disappointments. There have just been little things nibbling at my joy.

If I let these events, people and thoughts continue to steal my joy, then I know what will happen. First I’ll become discontent, then grouchy and finally depressed. That’s not going to happen. I’ve worked too hard to get out of major depression.

Here’s my 5 step plan to smash those joy stealers.

1. Link up with Susanne’s Friday’s Fave Five. I wasn’t going to write out a blessing list this week. I was going to let my feelings dictate my actions. Skipping one week won’t hurt. But then I remembered a conversation my Wednesday night small group had about us sharing our blessings this week on Facebook and/or blogs. And I also remembered the faithful group of ladies besides Susanne (like Brenda from Brendas-blog, Laura from Outnumbered Mom, Kathie from A Sparrow’s Home, Faith from Gold in the Clouds, Willow  from Willow’s Cottage, and Nikki from Nikkipolani) who link up regularly. I feel like I know them. I am grateful for accountability and the faithful example of others. 

2. Rethink my fitness plan. This week my physical therapist told me he’d done all he could for me. Unfortunately I still have a way to go range-of-motion-wise and it looks like where I’m at now is forever. At first I was okay. Now I am down-in-the dumps with this news. Today I have decided I need to make new fitness goals, ones that are barely out-of-reach (literally). I have 2 more weeks of the dynasplint and if I stay faithful to using it, I will see more progress. Progress is what I need to aim for not 100% stretching ability. I am grateful for small increments of progress.

3. Start something new. I love the energy, new thoughts, and countless possibilities that starting a new project brings. I have wanted to do a women’s short-term mission trip for a while. This week details were nailed down, a date set, my pastor gave his approval, and it looks like a GO! I am grateful for the opportunity to show others that Jesus makes a difference in my life. I am grateful for the opportunity to do this with a group of awesome women. And I am grateful that Jesus uses me in His work despite my failings.

4. Create. It has been many months since I’ve done anything creative. I am not an artist nor is my work the most beautiful. But doing the work soothes me. So on my day off I am going to do something creative. I have a couple of ideas. It will be fun to see which one(s) pans out. I am grateful that being creative helps restore me when I feel unbalanced.

5. Extra time in the Word. I have been busy preparing for my Wednesday night group and studying several other potential studies for the Fall. My time with God has been more “professional” this past week. I was searching for answers for others. This week I will intentionally keep my time personal. And I will use some of my free time to just read my Bible. No agenda. No note-taking. Just read and see what God says to me. I am grateful that the Word changes me especially when what I do doesn’t make a difference. I am grateful that God wants to spend time with me even after I’ve been an absentee  friend.

Following this 5 step plan is sure to bring more joy into my heart and gratitude pouring out of my heart and into my thinking and actions!

Your Turn . . . What do you do to smash the joy killers in your life? Please share some of your blessings with us.

Related Post . . . Using Your Name to Spell Gratitude

One Word Blessings


Can you name 5 blessings from this past week using just one word? I did. Of course I used a few more words to explain them. Why don’t you share your blessings too? I linked up to Living to Tell the Story‘s Friday meme Friday’s Fave Five.

1. Cooling – as from the air conditioner. I HATE hot weather and that’s what CA (typically) has in July. But I don’t suffer too much since there is a very able air conditioner at work, and home and in my car.

2. Colleagues – I am back at work full-time now. I am sooooo appreciate of my work mates who “held down the fort” while so many of us have been gone. Their attitudes are awesome and they don’t look too beleaguered. Our boss came back to work this week too. It is great to have “our visionary” back.

3. Holiday – Love what the 4th of July stands for in America. I also love having a day off. I mainly spent it on the dynasplint.

4. Improvement – I’ve been using the shoulder dynasplint for one week now and I’ve seen a noticeable difference. Well, really, my physical therapist pointed it out to me today. 3 more weeks of using it should see even more changes (I pray).

5. Potluck – I went to 2 this week. (1) One was at my sista’s to celebrate the 4th. I brought Red, White and Blue Jello and my potato salad (the best in the world). (2) The 2nd potluck was with my Wednesday night Women’s small group. We are going to do this once a month. I bought tuna sandwiches from Subway. Why is it that food seems to taste better when you share it with family and friends?

Women’s Kayaking Trip Saturday, July 30th


Kayaking and eating lunch together is a great way to spend a Saturday morning.


WHERE: Meet at Cordova Neighborhood Church (by front door of church) to carpool to Lake Natomas.

TIME: Cars will leave at 9:45 a.m.

BRING: Sack lunch, money to share cost of entry fee to Lake Natomas. Barbie will bring iced water.

HELP NEEDED: Please let Barbie know if you have a kayak and/or can help transport her kayak.

RSVP TODAY: On your church communication slip by contacting Barbie, in Rudat Hall July 10, 17 or 24, leave a comment here, or call the church office at 635-5992.