Tuesday, August 30, 2016

My Pin Pal

What?

You've never heard of a pin pal before???

Well, neither have I, to be honest.
And I am not really sure what a typical pin pal would do.
To be honest-er.
But my pin pal and I? We write letters to each other.

At the beginning of the school year last September, my sister-in-law told me that her daughter's class had an assignment to find "a dependable adult to be their snail mail pen pal" during the school year. And she wondered if I would be willing to fill that role. Which I was happy to do! (In part, because I thought it was really cool to be referred to as a "dependable adult." *ahem*)
Only, the entire time we've been writing my niece has been referring to me as her pin pal.
And I think it's entirely too cute to correct.
Thus, I am - and have - a pin pal.

And may I tell you? It has been one of the most delightful experiences I've had as an "aunt."
An experience, that is, which we decided to continue beyond the end of last school year. Because it's fun to write letters - and to receive them. Ya know?
Our correspondence has helped me better know my niece. I laugh when I read her letters because she has a charming sense of humor. I enjoy hearing about the world from my niece's perspective, and chuckle to myself at the things she notices. And I love having a window into her young heart.
More than that, I love having an avenue which allows me to speak into her life. I want to speak, er, write words of faith, encouragement, and hope. I want my letters to be a source of inspiration for that sweet girl. Since we live in different cities and don't see each other often, I see our letter-writing as an opportunity to build into my niece and grow our relationship. And I am praying God will use it as such. Besides, I am aware that letter-writing is a dying art, and I am eager to help keep it alive.

So, my take-away challenge for you today:
Are you a "dependable adult" with a kiddo somewhere in your life?
How about training them up in the fine art of letter-writing, and building into their life in the process?

Karen

Monday, August 29, 2016

MOVE

Er,check that! I gave the wrong website in the video. Lansing-area ladies, go to http://www.moveconferencelansing.com/ to learn more about the MOVEment.

Karen

Friday, August 26, 2016

TLC at GLC

I poked my head into the Breezeway where my co-worker was playing Bingo with some residents last weekend - to say good-bye as I was heading home. (My co-worker, that is, who I hardly ever see because he works on a very part-time basis on the weekends.) And he said, "I hear you're leaving!?"
The look on my face must have told him that piece of information wasn't yet public knowledge, because he quickly covered it up recovered by saying something like, "You're leaving to go home?"

But when I came in on Monday, I discovered the clever cover-up hadn't actually covered up everything.
Because when I knocked on one dear woman's door to invite her to an activity - she asked me about the "leaving comment."
And what could I do?
I wasn't about to lie to her.
Nor did I want her to feel as though she was being abandoned.
Thus, I told her gently that while I am going to be leaving my regular employment at GLC, I will still be coming back for special occasions. "So, you'll still be here sometimes?" she asked. "Yes," I said, "I'll still be around. Just not as much."
And that answer seemed to satisfy her.

The decision to resign from GLC is the thing I've been wrestling with this summer. It's been the subject of many prayers and much seeking. And the focus of a lot of waiting.
But in the end, God has led my heart to follow Him through another door. I am going to be focusing my time and energy on my speaking ministry. My heart is very excited about it.
And the beautiful thing is, my team at GLC is welcoming me to continue working with them on an as-needed basis. That is - when big events are happening, or when circumstances call for it, I am going to be able to come in and do my "Life Enrichment Assistant" thing. I am going to be able to pursue the path God is paving for me, without completely walking away from the dear folks at GLC.

I am so thankful for the way God has worked out these details for me. What a joy it is to experience His hand as I have sought Him, and to be filled with such peace as I walk with Him.
Yeah, I think I'm receiving a little TLC of my own. *smile*

***My last "official" day at GLC will be next Friday.***

Karen

Thursday, August 25, 2016

It's What I Do

So, the other night we had a family meeting of sorts.

That is, we got together to explore a possibility.

OK. We test-drove a car.

Brian is in the driver's seat.
I'm riding shot-gun.
The boys are in the back.
And as soon as we get out on the road it seems the three of them simultaneously exclaim, "Alright. Let's see what she can do!" While I'm all, "Whoa, buddy. Take 'er easy now."
From the backseat I hear, "Zero to sixty, Dad. I'll time it. Go!" And I'm saying, "Oh, really? What if there's a policeman ahead of us. You wanna pay the ticket?"
Then comes, "Oh, yeah! Take this curve without slowing down!" And I'm all, "What if a deer jumps out in front of us?"
Next, someone challenges, "See how fast you can go in reverse!" And I reply, "No you don't. What if..."
At which point Josh interrupts with a hint of exasperation in his voice, "Oh, Mom. You're just worrying about every little thing that could possibly go wrong."
And I'm all, "Well, yeah. I'm a mom. That's my job!"

Can I get an "Amen!" from a sister who knows what I'm talkin' about?

Karen

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Digging Deeper, Seeking HIS Voice

My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me.

~John 10:27
My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me.

Seems like a fairly simple statement at first, doesn't it?

The sheep listen.
The Shepherd knows.
The sheep follow.

Simple.

But what if we dug deeper? What if we studied the implications?
If the sheep are listening, the Shepherd must be speaking.
If the Shepherd knows, He must be knowledgeable. Furthermore, the sheep must be knowable. That is, they must be submitting to the Shepherd and trusting Him to know them.
And if the sheep follow, the Shepherd must be leading.
So, perhaps that simple statement could also read: I, the Shepherd, speak. And because I speak good things, My sheep listen to my voice. I have the ability to know all things, thus I know my sheep. They know I am good and they trust me - so they welcome Me into their lives, to know them and care for them. And My sheep - who listen to and trust Me - also follow Me. Because I lead them, and show them where they should go.
Oh, what if we took time to dig deeper into the Word of God and seek His voice? If we got quiet and listened? Really listened - with the intent of letting Him shape us?
What would HE do in our lives, if we let Him have free reign?

I would love for you to join me at the Women's Listening Retreat on October 7 & 8, as we embark on this journey to seek His voice.

Karen

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Annnnnd, She's Gone Again

Three weeks.

That's how much time we got to have with our girl before she went away again.

Yeah. Sunday, Brian drove Elizabeth back to Wheaton.
Cuz it's time for her to start a new school year.
*sigh*
And she doesn't have plans to come home again until Christmas break.
And if she gets accepted for a project for which she's applying (Which I'm sure she will. Because she's such an amazing young woman. And I am not biased in the least. *ahem*) she says we probably ought not come out for Family Weekend in November - because she'll be busy with preparatory activities for the project all weekend. So we really wouldn't get to see her, anyway.
And I'm going to miss her sweet presence around here.

But this is good and right and the way it's supposed to be.
My baby girl - growing into a beautiful woman.
Following the path set before her by God.
Who loves her even more than I do.

Ahhhhh. So thankful I can trust HIM to watch over her every minute of every day - with love and wisdom and power and grace.

Karen

Monday, August 22, 2016

Need Help?

Karen