Write 31 Days… Year Three!

Write 31 Days… Year Three!

In 2014, I was just a couple years into my Whimsy in My Cup blog journey, though I had blogged off and on for our ministry and on a homeschool site for six years. I was getting a bit more serious about my writing – in the amount of time I put into it and with thoughts of earning somewhat of an income with my written words.

When I came across the Write 31 Days challenge, I was intrigued yet daunted by the task. I prayed about it, mused about it, thought about and ultimately jumped into that challenge in October 2014. (Find that 31 day topic and beginning post HERE) Again, last year, I pondered whether I would join in again – and I did. (Find last year’s beginning post HERE)

And here we are again, just days away from October 1st – day one of another Write 31 Days challenge. And here I am once again, excited, yet a bit daunted by the challenge and commitment. But, after much consideration and evaluation of the time commitment, I’m ready to jump in to another year of Write 31 Days!

I hope you’ll join me as I journey through some “not-so-famous” quotes and how the wisdom of the composer has affected me. Beginning on Saturday, October 1st, I will have a daily post up here at Whimsy in My Cup for the entire month of October. They’ll be quick reads but inspirational, encouraging and full of insight into life. See you on Saturday, y’all!

new dani whimsy

Day 1: Relentlessly Kind

Day 2: Be a Path Clearer

Day 3: A Night Owl

Day 4: Fear of Arrogance

Day 5: Are You Impressed?

Day 6: Wine For the Drunk

Day 7: Rules and Relationship

Day 8: The Sin Factor

Day 9: Redefined

Day 10: Don’t Worry About It

Day 11: What Love Can Handle

Day 12: No Smoking

Day 13: Questionable Leadership

Day 14: Love Well

Day 15: Promises and Character

Day 16: God Calls it Control

Day 17: Minus Love

Day 18: Where Are You Sitting?

Day 19: Creativity

Day 20: Controlling Behavior

Day 21: Get Up!

Day 22: What’s Scary to God?

Day 23: How’s Your Performance?

Day 24: Far Better

Day 25: Not Just Healed, Whole

Day 26: Long Days

Day 27: God is in Control?

Day 28: The Same Story

Day 29: What’s the Problem?

Day 30: Too Busy or Prioritizing?

Day 31: The Play is Over

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Wisdom to Succeed in Life

Wisdom to Succeed in Life

Not one person leaves life on earth without needing wisdom. We need wisdom in making decisions, wisdom on how to make or create or bake things. We need wisdom when parenting, wisdom in how to do marriage well, wisdom on how to manage our finances and our households. If we can make decisions and live out of wisdom, we will succeed in life.

Google is the most used website of our time. When we need to know something, in this century, all we need to do is know how to type the question into a search engine. Easy peasy. We can find knowledge at every turn. Facebook, Google, Pinterest… also, all full of knowledge. Many equate this knowledge to wisdom.

And though wisdom can include this type of knowledge, wisdom is far greater than the answer that Google spits out on “how to break up with my boyfriend”.

Yes, having wisdom actually is more than just knowing what to do. It’s a judgement call, it’s discernment.

I love the Greek definition of “wisdom” – it includes insight and skill. Those two words infer experience.

So what do you do when you need wisdom in a situation but have no experience?  James 1:5 has the answer to that question…

“If you don’t have all the wisdom needed for this journey, then all you have to do is ask God for it; and God will grant all that you need. He gives lavishly and never scolds you for asking.”

~The Voice Translation

The Lord has wisdom, insight, and skill in Every. Single. Area. of life. And He is just waiting to share it with us. All we have to do is ASK! This verse promises that He will give us what we need – not being stingy or conservative with His wisdom – He gives lavishly. (lavish is one of my favorite words!)

When we’re trying to figure out what to do, many thoughts and ideas can pop into our heads. We know the internet is full of “how to’s”. We can also get bombarded with others’ advice and opinions. Swimming in all that knowledge, we can find ourselves still grasping for what true wisdom would look like in our situation. So, how do we know? James 3:17 tells us exactly what God’s wisdom looks like.

But the wisdom from above is first…

pure.

then peaceable.

gentle.

open to reason.

full of mercy and good fruits.

impartial.

sincere.

If you are in a situation where you’re not sure what to do, if you’re getting pulled in every which direction with advice and opinions from well-meaning people, if you’ve resorted to asking Google what to do… Stop. Take a moment and ask the One who holds all the answers in His hands. Ask Him for wisdom. He will never turn you away. He will lavishly pour His wisdom out on you. And you will know it’s from Him when it’s pure, peaceable, gentle, open to reason, full of mercy and good fruits, impartial and sincere. He is so faithful and so good. And He is really for your success in life!!

new dani whimsy

Mama: Victim or Overcomer

Mama: Victim or Overcomer

I’m gonna go ahead and put a *warning* sign up now. This post will probably offend some – maybe most. Honestly, if I wasn’t the one writing it but had been a reader, I might be pissed off by it. But I feel it needs said.

Before I go into the ‘meat’ of my post, I have to say, I’m subject to the temptations just like we all are. Embracing the victim mentality. Feeling sorry for ourselves. The martyr syndrome. Riding the pity party train. We deserve everyone’s sympathy because life is so dam…er, dang hard. We’ve all been there. But, it ain’t God, y’all.

What spurred this rant is yet another ‘poor, poor mom… no one knows the troubles you face… supposed to be encouraging…’ post. Don’t get me wrong, we ALL need encouragement. Some days ARE incredibly tough and we need someone to come alongside and tell us we ARE supermom and we CAN get through this day. I’m SO for that. What concerns me is the way the enemy actually can turn this ‘encouragement’ into grounds for a pity party. Selfish runs rampant in our lives, we don’t need any encouragement towards selfishness.

We don’t need permission to wallow in the despair of a teen’s sassy attitude, the trials of potty training, the embarrassment of a toddlers very public temper tantrum, the frustrating hormonal roller coaster of the tween child… We DO need permission to put the enemy in his place (under our feet) when he pulls the ‘you poor victim of the toughest job on earth’ crap.

We need surrounded by those who encourage us to rise up. To grasp onto grace – which is the POWER to do what I couldn’t do myself. We need people to remind us that we are overcomers through Jesus. That He has equipped us for every good work (and parenting is the BEST work). That He gives wisdom LAVISHLY when we don’t know what to do. That we are CALLED to this purpose and He will enable us to do it.

Instead of a bunch of sympathy, we need folks that will cheer us on. Who will cry with us for a minute but then push us towards the Cross where we find everything we need thrive in parenthood. God is for you. He’s blessed you and entrusted you with the children you have. He KNOWS that with Him you can do ANYTHING… even get through a day with littles destroying everything in sight.

I leave you with a quote from a movie I’ve never seen but I’ve heard quoted lots of times…

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_rAHnwWfsaY

 

This day. Any day. Every day.

This day. Any day. Every day.

A luscious cup of coffee at the beginning of the day.

A child crying over math.

An unexpected cash gift.

A trip to the library that includes more dvd’s than books.

A bad hair day.

A quick trip to Target… with a stop at the Starbucks counter for a caramel macchiatto.

A frustrating language arts assignment.

A witty word from a teen followed by laughter.

A broken light fixture.

A relaxing 10 minutes in the tanning bed.

A baby who won’t stop crying.

A neverending pile of dishes. And laundry.

The mercy of a warning instead of a ticket.

A late night sitcom marathon.

The wake of the tornado called a toddler.

A timely word of encouragement.

…….

Every day is filled with routine. And the unexpected. It’s filled with laughter. And tears. In the light of eternity, we don’t have many days so make the most of each one. Redeem the bad moments with good. Find wisdom with each passing year.

“Oh! Teach us to live well! Teach us to live wisely and well!” Psalm 90:12 (The Message)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Growing up gracefully

Growing up gracefully

I love the generations. I love that God designed our lives to be integrated with people of all ages, in all seasons of life. I love that there are women that have gone before me in navigating being a wife, motherhood, ministry and just general womanhood. And though I may walk things they haven’t, I can glean wisdom from the road they have journeyed.

In Titus 2, it talks about the older women training the younger. I think this ‘training’ can happen intentionally through mentorship, bible studies and small groups but possibly it’s most effective when it happens by just doing life together. On the other hand, I love it when I can be a ‘student’ from afar – learning from books women have written or just following Facebook, Twitter and Instagram posts. I have many spiritual mamas and mentors – some close and some who don’t even know I exist but I’m learning from them just the same.

I think it’s important to surround ourselves with people who span all generations. For parents, you’ve got the younger generation covered just by your kids growing up in your home. If you’re not a parent, you’ll have to be more intentional about having younger people around that you can befriend and pour into. Then, there’s finding people from a generation before you that you position yourself to receive from. Those you admire the fruit of their lives and want to learn from.

As I think about the women I learn and receive from, there’s a few things I really admire – that I want to be part of who I am as I grow older…

1. Grandma’s that adore their grandchildren. I love getting a glimpse into ‘big name’ pastor’s wives through Instagram and Twitter. Bobbie Houston, Beni Johnson, Darlene Zschech regularly plaster my feed with pics of grandbabies. It makes me happy. How amazing when kids are celebrated by this generation. I’m a few years away from the gramma season but I will thoroughly enjoy it once it’s here.  🙂

2. A voice of wisdom that’s not arrogant or judgmental. When someone can see my immaturity but speak into it, while remembering she herself was once there, makes me much more receptive to hearing something I may not want to hear. I try to keep this in mind when in conversation with my own girls or other gals in a younger stage of life.

3. A woman who doesn’t try to pretend she is 20 or 30 years younger than she is – but keeps her body healthy and her wardrobe current. Growing older doesn’t have to mean being sluggish and dressing frumpy so having models of healthy and vibrant women who are continuing to dream and go after life is so refreshing. I want to grow old gracefully – like them!

4. A heart that’s full of wisdom yet ever soft to learning and growing. We will never ‘arrive’ at full maturity this side of heaven and maintaining a teachable heart after a person has been on this pilgrimage through life for 50, 60, 80 plus years is a trait to be admired.

5. A soul unscathed by cynicism or despondence. When you’ve been around to see a few heartbreaks, a few world disasters, a few life disappointments, it’s easy to develop a shell of hardness around your soul. Those who can keep hope, celebration and excitement for life as a core value are a joy to be around.

As another summer comes and goes, another birthday goes by, or I watch my kids reach another milestone, I’m reminded that life is short and I want to fully embrace each season and stage as it comes. If I’ll surround myself with all generations, I can learn how to do this joyfully and gracefully!