When my boss is away...

Last week my boss was out of the office, and it was a great time for me to catch up on projects that I had on the back burner. I try to take it (just a little) easier, enjoy a lunch or coffee date, and regroup, before he returns revved up for what's ahead. I also use the time to reevaluate my heart and spirit. I ask myself questions like:

  • Is this still where God has called me, and if so, am I being faithful in every area He has entrusted me?  
  • Do I love my job? Is there any aspect of it I would like to address or adjust? 
  • Is there anything I am doing out of obligation and my heart is not in it? Am I here because I have to be or because I want to be? 
  • Am I enjoying my life? Are there any changes I need to make to remain spiritually and emotionally healthy? 
  • Is there any responsibility or project that I could take to the next level? Am I still operating in excellence?

This is not some highly dramatic monthly inspection, but I do believe it is important to periodically take personal inventory--- to make sure we are fully invested and engaged in the life God has given us and our hearts are free from anything that hinders what He wants to do in us. 

In Psalm 139, David asked the Lord, "Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. Point out anything in me that offends you, and lead me along the path of everlasting life."

Let's take time to check our hearts, and make sure we are not living and working on autopilot. Because when my boss returns, it will be full speed ahead. And I want my focus to be set on what's in front of me and my heart to be happy doing it. 

My prayer: Lord, I take this moment and invite You to search my heart. If there is anything that is not from You, remove it. If there is anything that needs to be cleaned out, adjusted, addressed, corrected, You have full access. Thank You for being the author AND finisher of my faith. Thank You for Your promise that He who began a good work in me will bring it to completion. I am so grateful that You are my guide, counselor, and redeemer. Check my heart, and confirm that I am on the path that You have set before me. I want to follow You in full obedience and be fully engaged where You have called me. Thank You for loving and leading my life!

 

Your turn: Do you take the opportunity to do anything differently when your boss is out of the office? 

The Power of My Words

As an assistant and an extrovert, I spend most of my day communicating. Whether talking with our team, sending emails, making phone calls, or texting people, I use a lot of words each day. Unfortunately, in moments of foolishness, I find myself speaking first and thinking later. This is compounded by the fact that as an encourager, when I speak thoughtlessly, I feel immediately feel awful. 

This morning was one of those moments. My friend was looking for affirmation and appreciation, but instead I criticized and spoke ungratefully. Right away, I was flooded with verses from God's Truth, about the power of my tongue:  

With the tongue we praise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse human beings, who have been made in God’s likeness. Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers and sisters, this should not be.

The words of the godly encourage many, but fools are destroyed by their lack of common sense.

The tongue can bring death or life; those who love to talk will reap the consequences.

Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.

Lord, help me to remember that my words have the power to build up or tear down. Help me to use my mouth to speak words that encourage, add value, and bring life to those who hear them. 

Your Turn: Is there someone that you could encourage with your words? Let's write a card, send a text, or make a phone call and speak life to others today. 

2017 Words

Last year, my theme was an acronym (D.I.G), and this year God gave me alliteration. I felt three words for 2017: Focus, Fun, and Faith.

As I mentioned in the last post, when I get the word for the year, I spend some time praying and journaling about what it means and how to apply it to my every day. Here is a little glimpse into my personal thoughts regarding these words, and how I hope to incorporate them into this year:

Focus- I would like to be better at putting my eyes and attention to what's in front of me. When someone interrupts me at work, I want to stop what I am doing and truly listen to them. At home, I plan to limit my phone usage and put the phone in a different room while playing with my kids. I will keep a prayer list to be more effective and intentional in my quiet time. I would like to hear from God about what specific things I need to focus on and when, and make time in my schedule for these priorities.

Fun- This year I want to laugh out loud. Deep from my belly, tears in my eyes, soul full of joy kind of laughing. Often. I would like to be more fun as a mom- both planned fun outings like the zoo and spontaneous like building forts in the living room. I want to say yes more. I don't want "no" and "not right now" to be my default answers. I aim to set aside time to intentionally encourage others through cards, coffee, and conversations. This is my year to lighten up and not take myself so seriously. 

Faith- I want to believe God for both big things and little details this year. Y'all, I prayed Ephesians 3:20 last year and God showed up and showed off. Like over the top. This year is more of a James 2 focus for me. I want my actions to reflect my faith. I am planning to take the risks and step out when God calls me, trusting that His word will not fail and that His promises are backed by the honor of his name.  

 

2017 is my year to work diligently, play well, and believe big.

 

Your turn: Do you have a word or phrase for the year, and if so, what is it?