Location: Islamorada Key, Florida
Midway is a great little Coffeeshop located midway between Miami and Key West.
Location: Islamorada Key, Florida
Midway is a great little Coffeeshop located midway between Miami and Key West.
Be encouraged today, and set your heart to flight.
Too often, I believe we focus so much onfalling,failingand flounderingthat we can’t focus on freedom, finishing and flying. We get so wrapped up in the regrets of yesterday that we miss the “flight lesson” that is taking place in our lives today. If we are ever to succeed at flying, we must focus on the here and now and stop looking back. We must look forward,set our goals and take the risk. We must take the chance thatjust maybe we will jmp off that cliff, our sails will catch the wind and we will fly to heights unknown.
The Word says, “I can do ALL things through Christ who strengthens me.”(Philippians 4:13) It doesn’t say a few things.It doesn’t sayonly the things that we are good at or the things we might have perfected. NO.It says we can do ALL things through Christ! That means whatever He calls us…
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Really enough said.
But for those who don’t know, don’t understand or don’t believe, this Scripture seems foreign. Yet, within each soul, there is a longing to know a greater being, to rely on a stronger source, to understand a higher power. Why else would so many seek power, fortune and fame? Why do so many spend a lifetime searching for answers in “intellect, religion and deep findings of the universe?”
Because the Creator of our being placed that longing within our souls. The Master of the universe set those desires deep within our hearts; so, we might find Him and know Him.
That missing piece to the puzzle is Hope.
He is the Hope for which your heart longs. He has the love your heart so desires. He is everything you need.
Just try it. Say His Name, “Jesus.”
Location: Kiev, Ukraine
This place has amazing burgers! The atmosphere is really cool and comfortable, and the food is delicious. As you can see, the burgers they offer are very unique, but they do have “regular” cheeseburgers, too.
If you are American and plan to eat here, you need to be aware of one thing in particular: they will put sauce on our burger, regardless, if you ask for no sauce. Apparently, they offer sauce on the side; so, when you request no sauce, they interrupter this as no sauce on the side. The sauce that is put on your burger is meant to be complimentary. It’s actually a good sauce and is tasty with the burger, but it was a little comical for our party of 9 to come to this conclusion, as it took four tries for the restaurant to understand what a “plain cheeseburger” was. This concept was actually never realized in our visit, even after two translators tried to translate, “no sauce,” but rather than being annoyed, we chose to laugh it off and just eat the burger with the sauce “that wasn’t really a sauce.” 😂 The burgers and fries are just that good!! I’m sorry, I don’t have a pic. I higher I did but apparently not.
This restaurant is rather new, and the staff doesn’t seem to be very versed in much beyond what they are accustomed to; so, if you run into a difficulty as we did, I’d suggest just giving them a bit of grace. They’re new, and hopefully, they will learn differently. As I stated before, the food is delicious, and they have the potential of being a great restaurant. So, hopefully, they can realize what “no sauce” truly means before too many Americans visit and don’t like the additional condiment on their burger, because, again, those things are delicious!! 😉
Oh, and they have a really cool hand washing area, too. You can simply wash your hands here instead of holding up the restroom line.
Comfort zones are so… well, comfortable. They’re nice and cozy. They’re places of no discomfort, no pain, no adjustment, no change. They are places where it’s easy to do what you do, and you have no fear of failure, intimidation or rejection. Comfort zones are where you can set your course “steady as she goes” and not worry about a thing.
Comfort zones can also become the place of stagnation and mediocrity. If you remain in your comfort zone long enough, you’ll never grow, you’ll never be challenged, you’ll never have to face the fact that you could be wrong in your methods, your words or even your mindset and how you approach life. When you choose to stay here for decades upon decades, you can even begin to regress.
The huge oak trees never become massive shelters in the forest without the acorn moving beyond the comfort of the warm soil. The flower never becomes a beautiful rose or a lovely tulip that comforts at the graveside without the moving and sprouting beyond the tiny seed that once was. A child never develops a skill that can affect the world until he goes through the needed the process of learning, development, and training that causes him to step beyond where he began the process. Growth simply doesn’t happen without change.
Even so, you and I never become mighty men and women of strength, character and grace without those uncomfortable moments that draw us out from the shadows and force us to adjust to the new, the uncomfortable, and yes, the changes that come.
If we constantly refuse to adjust, we will constantly stunt our growth. If we constantly stunt our growth, then we may remain in that comfort zone, but we will have nothing to show for it at the end of our days. Once something (or someone) grows comfortable, unyielding, unmovable, and stagnant, what purpose and what value does it really hold at the end of life?
How comfy are you??
This. If you are a mother who still has children at home, you need to read this. Especially if you have littles in your home, this is a must read. I promise, you will feel strength once you’re done. Jennifer Batchelor, the author, has an amazing way of bringing grace right to our hearts.
My favorite quote is, “I’ve yet to find a hack for parenting, though. There is only the slow, long, daily work of getting to know each child as an individual, and then tailoring your methods to meet them where they are.” She is so very right. When we get to tailor our lives to some other mother, or create in our child the responses we see another child has, we are destined for failure. We must find grace for the moment and remember, we all go through seasons in this life. We just have to learn to thrive in them rather than just survive.
What she shared is so very true. We must learn to lean into our hard. Reading her post led me back to a blog I’ve read so many times. This person has taught me the art of leaning so well; although, I’ve never met her in person, and now, she has simply left a beautiful legacy for us to read and remember. Kara Tippetts shared her heart time and again through this blog as she braved the struggles of cancer that wracked her body with pain, fear and doubt; yet, she came forth triumphant and victorious. She opened her heart through her writings so honestly and with such vulnerability that I stand in amazement time and again. I encourage you to read, Braving Broken to start. Her story still challenges me to find that grace everyday and live it to the fullest. 💗
Where do you go when your load is heavy? Who do you turn to when the weight of the world seems to be on your shoulders? What do you do when all feels lost, and you don’t know what to do?
Sometimes, life just stinks, and there’s not a thing you can do to change it. The rain has been coming for weeks, and now it’s pouring, and you find yourself without an umbrella or raincoat; then, the lighting strikes, and the thunder rolls on and on.
What do you do in moments like these? What is your reaction, your response, your thoughts in the midst of the torrential rains? Do you run for shelter or fight the elements? Do you grow angry and frustrated or just sit down and wallow in your tears of pity?
My thoughts turned here as my heart grew heavy today while I read a post from a friend who is having open heart surgery this morning. It was sudden, no real signs of trouble, but she just didn’t feel right. She has significant blockages, but her arteries are too small for a stent. The doctor said he is going to do as many bypasses as he possibly can to assure the best life she can obtain. She is a single mom of two college age children, about to finish her degree and just landed a great job.
I struggle with these questions as I listen to an update from another friend who has had an incredible year of troubles. Her body just developed a disorder where her arteries naturally create blockages. She’s had over a dozen surgeries and procedures over the last year, and she’s not eligible for a heart transplant. She now goes to cardiac rehab simply to obtain the best life she can possibly have with the condition, and even this treatment can cause heart to have an episode due to over exertion and stress. She is married, and her husband is currently overseas completing his job assignments while she is in the states dealing with all of this without him.
My heart wrestles with these scenarios and ponders the possibilities as I read yet another status from a friend who daily struggles with a condition of Anaphylaxis where she can simply awake in the night and have to inject 2 or 3 epi’s into her body just to have the time to get to the ER before she takes her last breath.
Each one of them have their own fears, doubts and questions as these circumstances play out in their lives. Each one have share both their hopes and their trepidations in living with these conditions. And each one amaze me time and again by their unfailing faith in their God. For all of these dear friends of mine know the saving grace of Jesus Christ.
I cannot adequately tell you of the hope He brings in times of struggle. I cannot clearly express to you the peace He gives in moments of crisis and distress. I cannot give you a description that truly describes the abundance of His unconditional grace which you will find when you believe.
Yet, I can tell you this. When you believe, and when you completely surrender your heart to His, you’ll know what I’m talking about. You will realize the hope my friends have found.
I pray you find Him, and I pray He reveals Himself to you in such a way that you have no doubt, no question, no way of denying what we have found to be eternally true.
Location: Kiev, Ukraine
This restaurant is so authentic to Ukraine, and if you are visiting Kiev, you need to place it on your “must see (and eat).” The atmosphere is set in rural country inn or home, and as you sit at your table looking throughout the restaurant, you can almost imagine being in someone’s countryside home. It is very cozy and comfortable. The waiters and waitresses are all in traditional Ukrainian attire, and most evenings, there are a variety of singing groups who will come to your table and serenade a song or two.
The food is delicious, and if you can’t read the Ukrainian on the menu, no worries. Just flip it over for English; however, not being too familiar with authentic Ukrainian dishes, I opted to be safe and got the chicken Kiev. It was absolutely delicious! The lattes are tasty, and one in our party got the cherry dumplings and said they were scrumptious. The bread they serve before hand is tasty, but if you’re American, you may be surprised they don’t serve traditional dairy butter with it. They serve a beet horseradish, a very spicy mustard and a “butter” made from pig fat. This is, actually, a staple of Ukraine that came into play during their long years of famine. It is a little too greasy and not too tasteful for my liking, more akin to pure lard, but for the Ukrainian natives who were hosting us, it was an appreciated topping. They also serve before the meal small, square pieces of toasted bread with a pickle and a little square of pig fat (kind of like a substitute for bacon). The bread was tasty with a hint of garlic, but I skipped again on the fat square. It all definitely adds to the authenticity of the restaurant, and I wouldn’t change a thing!
In the evening hours, a groups of Ukrainian singers will come to serenade, and apparently, there are different groups. My husband was here in September, and there was a group of all men who sang traditional Ukrainian songs, and one man whistles like a bird. I watched the video, and it was amazing! The night we were there, it was a duet. The woman played the accordion and sang, and the man had a deep, burly voice and distinguished mustache. They sang strong and beautiful, singing of a handsome fella loving a beautiful woman.
It was simply a delightful evening, and I hope every time we are in Kiev, we might get to visit this restaurant. You leave feeling just a little more Ukrainian than when you walked in.
Be a lion today…
Too often, as Christians, we allow the enemy of our soul to defeat us, because we forget the promises we have been given. Too often, we lie down in the muck and mire of our lives and allow our circumstances to overwhelm us to the point of suffocation. We lay down our weapons, and we back away from our destiny, because the way seems too long and the fight appears too hard. We read the Scripture that the enemy is like a lion looking to devour us and we believe it, forgetting the rest of the verse that tells us to “resist him, standing firm in the faith!”
We have been given the weaponry to defeat what comes against us! We are notmeant to be wimpy, noodle-spined children of God. We are children of a risen KING! Weare destined to win this thing, not because we are so strong nor…
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You left so many years ago
I thought the time could never be restored
The years changed us. The years let go.
I believed we’d always be strangers passing and more
You returned for a bit
I thought maybe a relationship could grow
The days changed us. The days in our heart lit.
I believed we’d not restore years but maybe a new life we’d know
Then you left again, maybe this time forever
I thought things could be different, an alteration from things destined
The moment changed us. The moment of surprise severed.
I believed it could be new but now your old self may win
I can not determine what may come
I will pray it’s not what I feel and what I see
I do not know what tomorrow will sum
I will hold to hope and believe safe and secure is where you will be
1/26/18 – MG
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