It’s been a while since I’ve posted but felt like sharing this through the blog site. This video presentation was my mother’s 65th birthday gift earlier this month. Very touching and well done. Sharing it in the hopes that it blesses someone else. Tootles!
I heard this phrase years ago and wrote a poem based on it. Today, I came across the devotional, perhaps from where the phrase originated. I love it, it’s still relevant, and therefore I thought I’d share it.
“Recently, when visiting my nieces in Florida, I got down on the floor to color with them. They love the Disney princesses, and so we were coloring a picture of Cinderella. When we opened their container of crayons, a burst of colors greeted us. These were well-worn crayons that had been used to color dozens of pictures. I chose a broken and worn-out green crayon.
In our throwaway society, it would be easy to think that the work of this crayon was done. That it needed to be replaced with a brand-new crayon instead. However, as I began to color with this broken worn-out crayon, my nieces looked at me and told me my coloring page was beautiful.
Because, you see, broken crayons still color.
Just like that broken worn-out crayon, we can also feel useless to God because of the mistakes we have made or the things that have been done to us. We feel broken and ugly and useless. We think God would rather have someone else do His work. Someone with less brokenness and baggage. Someone who has it all together.
The truth is, we all have brokenness in our lives. Many times we compare our blooper reel to someone else’s highlight reel. The truth is no one has a perfect life. And just like that broken crayon, God is always able to use our brokenness to create something beautiful.
Many times what we see as our biggest mistakes and failures can become what God uses the most. However, the enemy in our minds often tells us we are worthless and no longer useful for God’s kingdom. Little do we know that God is using our brokenness to create something more beautiful than we could ever imagine.
Lord, thank you that you never waste anything that has happened in our lives. I thank you that you can turn my brokenness into something beautiful even when I cannot see it. Help me to open my heart to you and allow you to bring healing and freedom. I love you. In Jesus’ name I pray, amen.” From Body and Soul Publishing LLC.
#emotions #pain #healing #prayer #inspiration
One vowel can change your life everyday: Bitter or better? Determine which you will be today, each day. Tootles!
#attitude #chooseyourownweather #perspective
The point of sacrifice: To give up what could be today for what will be tomorrow. Daily, keep the future you want to see in mind and let it drive your decisions and your actions. Your future self thanks you.
#sacrifice #goals #goal-setting
So, I have a project that I need to complete. It involves reviewing and transferring multiple data points for 2,000 lines of data that don’t match up evenly, which means I have to view each line carefully, multiple times. Further, It’s both quantitative and qualitative. I want to pull my hair out (mind you, I have a REALLY close cut, so that’s not possible). Such work is simply not my gifting, it does not bring the joy or excitement it might to others who love to work with data compilation and computation.
Thankfully, during my quiet time this morning, while reading a prayer, I was reminded of the blessings of responsibility. I then decided to view this project as an opportunity for growth, for strengthening, and a break from the norm. Plus, I must believe that the end analytics (an outsourced responsibility) will be beneficial for multiple reasons. So, I’ll take my new perspective and apply it with fervency to this project. O, and I’ve already decided that I’ll also celebrate its completion! I am already looking forward to that day.
Turn negativity into positivity.
#perspective #gratitude #responsibility #jobs
On yesterday evening, I paused action on my “productivity” list and decided to attend a graduation program that celebrates youth in foster care. I was completely unsure that I would see anyone there that I knew (and sure enough, I knew NONE of the graduates) and I had no significant emotional ties to any of the staff and guests. I only knew that I wanted to be a part of the celebration that honored these young people. Here are some of the things I observed and appreciated:
- Not only were graduates honored, but so were their caregivers (foster parents, program supervisors, social workers, counselors, etc).
- A spoken word artist’s encouragement to embrace and share your story, no matter what it is.
- A reminder that all things (good and bad) work together to our ultimate good, to our ultimate shaping.
- That attitude is important…the attitude we choose to adopt and daily live by affects us. To my current memory, Stephen Covey referred to it as “our own internal weather.”
My fellow readers, some of these young people have faced horrors from which a lot of us were spared, but they chose to become focused and finish school. Among them were scholarship recipients to well-known colleges, husbands and wives who’d already started families, teen business owners, singers, artists, and those who are still trying to figure out the next step. The point: they made it to this point, they achieved that goal and by God, they will continue to soar and achieve more. I did not know any of them personally but I’m incredibly proud of each of them and was honored to have been in their presence. In the words of Dr. John C. Maxwell, remember that “Change is inevitable. Growth is optional.” Choose growth. Hats off to all graduates and the next step in this journey called life.
#fostercare #ittakesavillage #youth #focus #graduates #Johncmaxwell
Usually, when we hear the word diversity, it is in the context of race, gender, or religion, but diversity is important in every category. Below is a nugget about diversity as it regards conflict management, team engagement, and organizational health. Patrick Lencioni continues to deliver well on needed topics for growth. Read below.
“…the power of diversity, and the reason why it remains so misunderstood and under-exploited in most organizations: it requires conflict.
The practical advantage of diversity boils down to this: a group of people with different perspectives usually makes better decisions and finds more creative solutions than those who have largely similar views, backgrounds and skill sets. This is true for all teams, whether they’re running a corporation, a church, a school or a movie studio. However, when a team cannot productively engage in conflict, not only does that diversity remain untapped, it becomes a competitive disadvantage.
That’s because when team members with divergent points of view cannot openly and passionately advocate their positions, the team will not be able to properly understand and incorporate those ideas into a final decision. Instead, they will frustratingly agree to compromise, walking away dissatisfied with the outcome and resentful of their team members who they still don’t understand.
…when we talk about diversity, the emphasis is usually on acceptance and tolerance and “getting along.” All of which, of course, are good things. The problem surfaces when those qualities prevent people from challenging one another’s points of view out of fear of being labeled close-minded or intolerant.
And so the key to making diversity work is to teach people first how to appreciate one another’s differences, and then how to challenge them in the context of pursuing the best possible outcome. When a company can do that, it will transform diversity from a slogan to a real competitive advantage. Source: https://www.tablegroup.com/hub/post/diversitys-missing-ingredient
#diversity #organizationalhealth #conflictmanagement #teamdevelopment
Today, I attended a homegoing celebration, also known as a funeral, for someone beloved. He was my sister’s father, a guy I’ve known since before she was born, and someone who was genuine. I’ve always loved the fact that he was forthright. He loved deeply and could be a little gruff, but he never hesitated to be himself. In doing so, his sincerity touched a lot of people, as evidenced by the remarks at the funeral. I also found that he’d served on the trustee board at his church. He truly was an involved and beloved person. Doesn’t mean he was without his faults; it simply means that he used his time to love on people and to live with purpose.
A part of the program stated that you’d often find him reading the newspaper and listening to gospel music, loudly, which brought about a chuckle from many, to include myself. I realized that he lived the advice to “be where you are.” Further, because of the wonderful people I met or was reacquainted with today, I feel my life has been further enhanced because my path crossed his path 40 years ago and because of my sister, our paths have remained crossed. As I reflect, I hold to the fact that we can choose to define the richness of life on so many factors other than money. The quality of the people with whom we form and maintain relationships can help determine our emotional and mental wealth. Let us strive to have our richness be to our benefit, and not to our detriment. To reach the mountaintop and be alone or to be surrounded only by those who want something from you is an unenviable position. Let’s strive to surround ourselves with quality people. Not perfect people, for they don’t exist, but people who enrich our lives and leave us wanting to be a better version of our former selves.
For 2018, I am rereading Pastor Rick Warren’s Daily Devotional and decided to share one that was particularly thought provoking from a few weeks ago, as it promotes a call to action BY YOU, whether it be via community volunteerism, advocating for a cause via your job, church, or wherever the opportunity arises.
“One key to discovering your destiny is to identify the needs that stir your heart. What is it that upsets you? What causes you to think, “Somebody ought to do something about that”?
Whatever it is, that is the key to your destiny. My wife, Kay, calls it being seriously disturbed. Why? Because, it bothers you so much that it moves you to action. Is there anything that disturbs you or is your life so insulated that nothing makes you say, “Somebody ought to do something about that”?
Here is a homework assignment: Make a list of the needs you see that disturb you. Then pray and ask God to show you ways you can use your gifts to make a difference.”
For me, it remains advocating for children who have been abused and/or neglected. It’s something I’ll never understand and I’ll never stop fighting against. My newest “disturbance” is childhood food insecurity in America. It’s a larger problem than I initially thought. I’m looking forward to making some level of impact in 2018.
What about you? Share your “disturbance” and your plan of action! It may not be something global, it may be something simple…and that’s ok. The goal is to set a goal to make a difference, whether it be in the home, in the community, in the country, or in the world.
I came across the following quote recently. While it is brief, it speaks volumes:
“Chance favors those in motion.” — James H. Austin
I encourage you to continue to set small and large goals and focus on them with all diligence. From volunteering in the community or church, finding professional development opportunities, getting that degree or writing that book…keep striving, keep researching, keep trying…to see what will work and what won’t work. You’ll never know unless you try. From Thomas Edison: “I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.” I love it!