Thursday, August 30, 2012

The Bank of Life...




The following is from a book I read several years ago called "If Only It Were True" by: Marc Levy. The book was turned into a movie and was renamed "Just Like Heaven". This excerpt was loosely thrown into the movie but, as is typical, reading it made the point so much more powerful.

"What it one morning you woke up and someone told you that you had one a prize? The prize was that every morning when you woke up, a bank account was opened in your name with eighty six thousand four hundred dollars. With this prize there are two rules that you must follow.

#1-  Everything you fail to spend is taken away that night. You cannot cheat by taking unspent money from the account and adding it to the next days account. You can only spend it. However, when you wake up the next morning a new account is opened for you with the same amount of money as the first.

#2- At any time, the bank can break the agreement, without warning. It can be over at any time, account closed, no more to be opened.

If you don't spend it, you lose it all by the end of each day. You can never get it back. What would you do with it?

It's not hard to imagine. Anyone would say that they would spend the money on anything, and everything that they wanted, and anything and everything that our family and friends wanted, too. Maybe you would even spend it on people that you don't know... After awhile it would be hard to spend so much each day. But... you're probably thinking... "why does that matter? We don't have that luxury... ", but the truth is, we do! Our bank account is time. Every morning you are given eighty six thousand and four hundred seconds. At the end of the day, any time "not used" is gone forever. Yesterday has vanished. Everyday we are given this gift, but at any time it can be taken from us. Without warning life can end... So what do you choose to do with that time? Your daily ration of seconds

Few people really understand the importance of time. If you want to know what a year of life means, ask a student who just flunked a year end exam.

Or a month.. Talk to a mother who has just given birth to a premature baby and is waiting for him to be taken from an incubator before she can hold him safely in her arms.

A week... Interview a man who works in a factory of mine to feed his family, or a soldier who risks his life daily.

A day... Ask two people in love who are waiting to see each other again.

An hour... Talk to someone with claustrophobia who is trapped in a broken down elevator.

A second... Talk to someone who has just narrowly escaped death in a car wreck.

A thousandth of a second... Ask the athlete who just won the silver medal at the Olympic games instead of the gold he has trained for all his life.

LIFE IS MAGIC! Live for EVERY SECOND. Appreciate the value of EVERY instant & make the most of EVERY second YOU have left.


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Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Breaking The News

Losing a parent is one of those things that unless it has happened to you, you can't understand. You can feel sorry for me or be there for me but its difficult to come close to understanding how it feels unless you have experienced it.

Everyone, wherever you go in life, expects you to have a Mom and Dad. People openly ask you about your parents, often when they barely know you. In school, jobs and day to day life people are curious; Our parents are one of those things that people ask about when getting to know you. Although losing a parent comes with many challenges, there is one significant challenge that I believe is often overlooked....
Nearly EVERY new person you meet will at some point need to know this bad news about your life.

My mother passed when I was in elementary school and as such most everyone there knew of her death. My teachers knew, my friends knew and other people around me either experienced it with me or where there while we all dealt with it. However, as I started both middle school & high school I was faced with a new set of teachers & classmates. In middle school and high school, there were still those people who had known me before, but more and more I came across those who didn't and found myself in the uneasy circumstance of "having to tell". For me, having people who knew and others who didn't made introductions a guessing game for me. Typically I avoided the issue, but of course it came up. On more then one occasion I remember letting the words "my mom and dad" slide into conversations because it was so hard to "drop the bomb" on a new friend. As is obvious, this never worked for long, and ultimately I would tell my friends about what had happened.

The hardest of all was when I began to work outside of all familiarity. I didn't know the people I was working with or my employers and they didn't know me. Job applications don't have a line stating "Are both of your parents living?" As an adult, you don't want to brush over the facts, so naturally it became more important to tell people when the topic presented itself.... (As a teacher, constantly meeting new children and new families, this happens A LOT!!!) I still haven't found an easy way to "break the news" of my mothers passing to people that I meet along the way. I tell people about her death, but because converstaion tends to find that subject easily, I often am forced to tell those I barely know. I know it makes people sad for me and for my family, and of course you appreciate that... but in the face of a new person, what more is there to say? Often you hear the words "Oh, I'm so sorry!"... but from there, where do you go. It's not okay, I'm not over it, and it still makes me sad during some parts of most days. Obviously when we loose someone we all go on with our lives, but they stay with us forever.

With repetition it HAS become easier to let people know about my mother, but it is definitely a constant reminder that I would have never thought of until it began happening to me. In some ways it has grown to be a blessing. I remember her often, and with so many people,  people I know well, and those who I may have just met; It helps her memory live on.

 (I thought it may be cool to share some of the pictures of my mom that show how much we look alike)


Monday, August 27, 2012

Words





Words are much more powerful then we often choose to see
Words can be much harsher then we mean for them to be.

Kind words lift us up
Help us all along
We find them in the mouths of friends,
Sometimes in a song.
They fill our hearts,
They lift us up,
They often make us strong.

Motivations help us know that someone sees our worth.
They help us know that things we do are needed ‘round the earth.
They keep us going when we’re down,
Give us a smile instead of a frown.
To know you matter means a lot.
When you thought you did, but you forgot.

God’s word gives us hope of life.
Hope of tomorrow,
Days without strife.
It brings us safety, love and care
Yet shows us that life doesn’t have to be fair.
But to those who value His good word,
It’s the most beautiful message ever heard.

Harsh words always bring us down
Make us unhappy
Make us frown
When we are hurt it takes “happy” away.
Sometimes it lasts longer then it should stay.

Your words speak of volumes
Straight from your heart.
The words that find ears
Give emotions a start.
Think before speaking
We all know it to be true.
The things people say
Always matter to you.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

10 Little Things That Mean Something Big






1. Sometimes we fill our lives, our heads or our hearts with so much  that we forget what is important. If we are so full of things that don't matter or things that aren't good for us we consistently reduce the amount of space we have for good.





2. I'm bad about this... Sometimes I dwell on things for far too long. It would do us all well to remember that life is short. Make the best of it. If you can't learn to get past bad days you won't get very far.





 3. Comparison sometimes kills our happiness. There is no one in the world who is exactly like you, so why should your life be based on anything. Other then the life of Christ, we need no example.




 4. Every single time.








 5. No matter what you have or where you are you can do something to help someone. Often the best form for this is doing something with no possible chance of a return favor. Do something for someone that will be of no good to you. Do something nice when no one is looking and make a habit of it. 


6. Challenge them..
 
7. Your beauty is on the inside. The kind of beauty that is in your heart will win every time. You may be gorgeous on the outside but without a kind heart you will never get very far.




8. It's not hard to be nice to your best friend.... but what about everyone else? When a person is rude to someone like this (that they think has no value) it shows you how they will treat you if they are angry with you or if you mess up and it directly involves them.

It's also good to remember that without that waitress, your food will never come. Without that teacher/ childcare worker, you would be at home, short a job you may love or money you may need. Without that hero (soldiers, cops, firemen, etc) it's every man for himself.






9. Sometimes I just have to tell myself to stop. Each day has enough worry of it's own. Worrying will never do you any good.  Often when we dwell on something that is perfectly normal. We look at it until we find the tiniest of flaws... and it sticks in our minds. It's good to be observant, but not to the point of creating mountains out of molehills.. Nothing is perfect.. everything has it's flaws... and sometimes those flaws turn out to be the most beautiful parts.


10. If you focus on bad, spend time with bad people, and do bad things... you will eventually be bad... its how we work as humans...

So naturally, focus on good, spend time with good people, and do good things...

It is not always easy but it is always the thing that is best for us.


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Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Bigger Then You Think


As most of you know, I work with children nearly every day. I teach preschool at Star Academy as my full time job, teach bible classes at church and babysit regularly for several families. I love doing it because I love children. They are difficult at times as anyone who is around kids knows and its not always easy to know the right thing to do with them, or for them.

I've heard people say "kids are smarter then we realize" but, in my experience I have come to find just how true that really is. (They know SO much!!!) Especially once they begin to talk, children pick up on our actions, remember and repeat the things we say and can pretty easily sense the mood that we are in. We all need to remember this... everyday.

Not only are children very perceptive, they are like sponges...
It is so amazing to me just how much they can learn in those first, precious few years.
I think, as adults we tend to forget that though children are "our babies" they shouldn't always be treated as such. I've come to find that children not only need independence, they want it. The first steps of the process may be slow, but, ultimately they want the confidence and skill to "do it by myself".

To those of you who have little minds, and little ears around you, remember this..
It's easy for us to get swept up into thinking that they don't understand, but often, they do.
Think about the mark that YOU are leaving in their life.
Think about what you are teaching with the things that you do and say.
...and never forget that children are our future...

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Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Inspiration

The last few weeks of my life have been somewhat crazy; filled with the kinds of events that really make you think. My life is not the most interesting life lived by any means, but there are moments when I stop and realize that God is definitely keeping me on my toes... Lately, life has been full of those moments.

A Look at our Life Lately:
First, Meet Gryffin...(yes, it's short for Gryffindor in Harry Potter) our puppy.  I have always wanted a puppy.. (who doesn't??) and while I knew it was a huge responsibility I had no idea that getting a puppy this young (He is now 5 months old) was very similar to having a new born baby. We fell in love with him of course, but it has definitely had it's challenges. ;) None of that matters though, because he is the cutest puppy ever. :P

Secondly...  Dan got in a bad car accident. He came out of it without a scratch, but after seeing what happened in the wreck, and seeing his car... it was very hard to believe. It's one of those moments that brings you to your knees and throws you into a mess of emotions. Car accidents hit close to home with me, for obvious reasons, and although Dan was not hurt, this one was no different. It's so easy to think "what if?" but I found myself having to make an effort to remember just how lucky he was, and that in the shadow of all that "could have been" none of it actually was.

Third... After what seemed like far too long me, my sister and our two best friends had a nice dinner (& dessert) out, and got to be together and be silly. I don't think any of us realized how much we needed a night like that, just us until we were in the moment. These girls mean the world to me... and without them, my life would literally be turned upside down.
                                        

Last week three of our close friends (one that lived with us as a roommate) headed to Florida College. Florida is far away. I let the day sneak up on me and when it came I was no where near ready for these three to go.. I love them like crazy... and miss them already.

Me & Ali during our Girls night/ devo :)
A night without our nerdnanerdnerdnerds.. ;)


                                    Eric & I on Halloween :)
                                  ha... he was "Man Candy"
                                  Mersulberger's Forever! ;)


                Me & Josh on my birthday :)...no description needed... Josh is just awesome.. :P

Then I got to go with my friends Jessica to see baby Remi's ultrasound. It was the first I had ever seen live and it was a VERY cool experience! :) I had so much fun getting to see little Remi move around. I'm thankful that I met Jessica & Ryan, and can't wait to meet sweet little Remi!!

Lastly, Dan's uncle Charley, after a motorcycle accident with a fleeing drunk driver lost his leg, and then, this week his life after a long hard fight.

From uncontrollable laughter to the shedding of tears... these special moments (& people) make us think. What are we doing here? These are the things that matter most. God, of course, above all. But... our families and our friends are what makes us who we are. Without them, who would we be? Without them, what would we have..

I hope that these & other special people in my life (all of you know who you are, even if you aren't specifically named here! ;))always know how much they mean to me. :)

Much Love... Sarah 




New At This..

Still figuring this out...actual posts to come :P