Reflections of 2016


2016 was one of those years where so many people, myself included, felt overwhelmed and, many times, lost in an emotional journey. The year was hit hard with loss on a personal level as well as a public one but it’s also had moments of great triumph.

Living in Kamloops I brought in this year with good friends, and although I was looking forward to a year of great things after an emotional roller coaster that was 2015, it became a year of great learning as I overcame obstacles and challenges thrown my way. 

I still remember the day I got the call from my cousin that her brother had died in a car accident and then later that day my mom calling to tell me my grandpa had passed away. It was like a Mack truck rammed me so hard in the chest that I could hardly breath. Little did I know these deaths would completely alter the course of my journey. Instead of moving to Fort Mac I ended up back in my home town and Have spent more time listening to God.

My daughter had been homeschooled for so much of her life that the choice to allow her to return to public school for grade 8 was very hard on me. I do believe she is right where she needs to be at this point in her young life. My career has altered slightly, I left childcare and now I have the challenge and joy of working with ASD Children. I learn something new ever day and I absolutely love it. It’s different then just working with my own ASD child. I left the Church I thought I was supposed be part of and ended up in a a place where I can feel God on such a deep level that it can become overwhelming sometimes. Financially it hasn’t been easy but that’s ok. I am making it work the best I can. Although things aren’t exactly how I pictured they would be I know I’m ok and I know my child is ok (even if she is driving me crazy some days) and that’s really all that matters. It’s funny to think that I thought I knew where I was headed and God said “nope, time to go this way!” 

I used to be of the mindset that “God only gives us what we can handle” but this year changed that for me as I really have taken the time to listen to him. He uses trials as a teaching moment and waits for us to ask him for help because we can’t go through life without him. He is a good father who, like any good parent, wants nothing but the best for us but we have to trust him and ask him for guidance and help because that’s what parents are for.

As 2016 is coming to an end I look back and can see the learnnng that has taken place through the loss and through the times of great joy. Relationships have ended, new friendships have been formed and through it all I have come out the other side a stronger, better me! I will go into 2017 knowing the importance of real, healthy relationships, cutting out toxic ones, and plan on spending the year accumulating less “stuff” and creating more memories with the people who are important in my life. 

My prayer for you is this. May God bless you with memories of great joy. May your heart be filled with love. May you spend more time laughing and less time hurting. May you be surrounded by people that enhance your life. May you reach out and help others without hesitation whenever you can. May broken relationships with family be healed. May 2017 be a year of listening to God and following where he leads and when you are feeling overwhelmed, may you call out to God and ask him to help you through the difficult time. May you remember to be thankful through all the good and the bad and know that God’s plan is always greater then ours!

Happy New Year!

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Give Thanks With a Greatful Heart…

It is Thanksgivinng weekend in Canada. It is a time of reflection on all the lord has provided. It has not been an easy year but I do know I am so very blessed.

I am counting my blessings:

My parents. No matter how crazy I may make them they are always on my side when it truly counts. We may not always see eye to eye but I know their love is pure and real.

My daughter. From day one she has been the most amazing blessing in my life. Although I am her teacher she also teaches me so much. Unconditional love is the greatest gift a mother can both give and recieve when it comes to their child.

My best friend and her husband. She’s there for me. He is my friend. Together and individually they have shown me such amazing friendship. They have both been there for me through the trials of this past year. They have allowed me to share in the joy that is their children. They are more than just friends. They are family.

My new life. I have been finding myself again. I am so glad that I was still hiding beneath the pain and the heartache that attacked over the year. I am blessed to have a roof over my head, a job that I am passionate about and a new found joy that has been missing for a long time.

I am thankful for all the trials. Without them I could not have realized just how important it is to trust in my God. He knows more then I do.

Be thankful in all life throws at you. The good brings us joy and the trials teach us and allow us to grow.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Trust In The Lord Always

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When the world I knew started crumbling around a few months ago I wanted to be angry with God. My heart was aching and I started to question why it is that when my world seems so wonderful something happens making me feel like a failure. I start to cry out to God “If you love me so much why do you allow such awful things to happen?” And then I remind myself to dig into his word, stop questioning his motives and pray consistently that he will lead me and that I will have faith and follow his lead not forge my own path.

I am human and I struggle sometimes in my faith but I still have faith and that is so important. I have to remind myself that his plan is so much greater then mine. I talk about this so much and that is because it reminds me to be faithful and trust in Him.

God is leading me somewhere and I am not 100% sure where that is but I am going willing where he leads and trying to remember to stay true to him.

There will be days of great trial and tribulation, but we must not be afraid for our God is Great and through him we can do anything!

Confidently Praying for God’s Will

This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. And if we know that he hears us – whatever we ask – we know that we have what we asked of him. ~1 John 5:14-15

Pray is like our own personal direct line to God. We can pick up the phone anytime 24/7 and know that he will be on the other end ready to talk or just listen. It is important to pray with confidence. this time of prayer shows God that we trust him. Being able to pray with confidence is easier if we know what God has revealed in his word. God is a father true to his word.

When we go to God we must first understand that his will may not be what we want and he may not give us an answer right away. the old saying goes “Father Knows Best” and we have the most amazing father who knows exactly what our hearts desires are. Having faith that God will provide for us is so important when we go to him with anything. Sometimes he will answer right away and sometimes it takes him awhile. Sometimes we get exactly what we asked for, sometimes its a variation and sometimes it is so completely different but he always answers (“Thy will be done”).

I have this terrible habit of praying without confidence. I go to God like a scared child afraid to ask in fear that I’m not going to like the answer. Sometimes I go to God like a spoiled brat making all kinds of demands and grand, selfish requests. I get upset, frustrated and even angry when I don’t get my way. When I go to God with confidence and remember that it’s his will not mine, I see great things. I don’t always like his response but I am ok because he truly does know what’s best.

When you are praying do it with confidence. Remember that we have the Greatest father a child could every want or need. Remember to Pray for his will not yours. Remember that you may not get the answer right away, but you will always get an answer. Remember that you may not like the answer but his answer but he truly does know what is best!

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Two Ears and One Tongue

Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger. -James 1:19

While taking time to dwell in Gods word this morning the focus really hit close to heart. We live in a society where we do not take time to actually listen to others and are so quick to anger. We feel that most frustrations from others are an attack on ourselves when in reality their frustration is built up from a lack of communication… We are slow to listen and quick to anger.

We have two ears and one tongue. So we should listen more than we speak. 

Wow! Those words to me are so powerful. Why is it that nobody is listening to others but speaking so much? How can we hear if we do not listen? We need to go to God and ask him to help us listen to others. What are they trying to say? What are their needs and how can we be encouraging to them? When we take the time to listen we will be better able to communicate and frustrations can make way for better understanding creating more calm and less anger. 

When dealing with our partners and child we sometimes tend to listen with one ear closed and probably speak more than we should would cause chaos in the home and discord and we loose common ground with our partners and little things begin to irritate us and then we begin to take those frustrations out on our children and instead of approaching our partners and children with kindness and love we approach them with unrest and anger.

Take time thought the day to have a moment with God and ask him to continually guide your thoughts and help you to use your ears more and your tongue less!

Balancing Faith and Heritage

Today I sttruggled not to be angry or frustrated but approach a very sensitive topic with an open mind and heart. The topic was that of being First Nations and a Christian. The two don’t seem to go together but they are, in part, who I am. 

Growing up we knew more about my moms family. My maternal Grandfather made a point of sharing with family about our Norwegian and Pennsivaniyan Dutch Ancestors. We learned a lot about Christianity and faith then we were taught the importance of giving back to our community, standing up for others and what was right and being strong in our walk with God. When it came to my dads family we knew we were Metis (Native and Scotish), but we were not taught much about of native heritage and I wish we could have learned more but it just wasn’t how it worked out for us. I truly believed my father wanted to teach us more but perhaps he just needed to learn more himself.

As time went on we all learned more. For me there was a lot of piecing things together and I am still learning and teaching my daughter along the way. Growing up in a small BC town with a large First Nations population not far from a Reservation with an old residential school. I was able to start the process of educating myself about the wrongs done to my people in the name of God. I was devastated at the thought that anybody could consider themselves a Christian while being involved in such terrible genocide that was almost completely dismissed as nothing.

I  have spent so many hours in prayer and council trying to balance my faith while embracing my Native heritage. I have had to struggle with other First Nations people telling me that I can not or should not be a Christian because of the wrongs committed in the name of God and Christianity. I think it is unfair to judge an entire group of people because of the actions of others. This the case in all walks of life. Stereotypes are an unfortunate part of society . 

Be strong in your faith, embrace your heritage, love all human kind, be generous,ecourage others, admit when you are wrong, standup for what is right,  listen to your heart, find comfort and forgiveness in your walk with God, and remember you are not responsible for the actions of others or the wrongs they have done.

Another Chapter in the Book of Life

I am sitting here going through curriculum that we already have on hand trying to figure out what’s being kept, what’s being sold and what’s being given away in preparation of one chapter coming to an end and new one just a turn of the page away. As this school year comes to an end its a time of reflection, a few tears are being shed but memories flood my mind.

   

7 years ago my outgoing little girl started her elementary journey. She has always been a very curious soul and extremely bright. In August she leaves Elementry Grades and heads in to high School grades a year earlier then the majority of her peers. Homeschooling has allowed her to advance at her pace with great success thus far. I am so proud of all her accomplishments. 

  

  
  
There are moments when I want her to just stop getting older. I remember sending her off to kindergarten thinking public school would be so wonderful for her. It came with its own set of challenges and it didn’t take very long to figure out that traditional school wasnt for her. We’ve tried a few different approaches to her education to figure out what works best for her and the truth is homeschooling just works.

It’s a bitter sweet time in my life. I love my baby girl so much and I am looking forward to this next chapter in her life and all she will discover and accomplish over the next 4-5 years when she will end another chapter and continue on a path hopefully directed by Gods word and continue with her heart of service.

My prayer is that she will continue to grow in her faith and live a Godly and blessed life!

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