Recently I had the opportunity to visit our local ambulance district headquarters with my daughter’s Girl Scout troop. It was a terrific experience.
The girls were able to see all of the equipment and try out some of the life-saving gear used by the ambulance personnel. Dana, our guide, took time to show and explain each part of the ambulance district offices, garage, training rooms, and living quarters. The sign in the picture above was hanging in the living room.
This sign was probably one of the greatest examples I have ever encountered of what faith truly is. The reality of what those medics and responders face daily struck me with tremendous force as I read and re-read those words, “Faith makes things possible, not easy…”
“Faith makes things possible, not easy…”
How many times have I found myself trying to reassure a student that I had faith in them?
Rarely did they realize my faith was in their ability to be successful at a task, not in the ability for the task to be done without some effort. Oh how I wish these words were in my teaching vernacular for the last decade!
What about all those times when I prayed for help with making a huge decision? Continue reading “Signs of Faith”
“Opportunity is not a lengthy visitor” – Into the Woods
These words always seem to pop up in my life at just the right time.
For the last month, I have not been writing much (the whole, “I’m too busy” thing). Each day that I don’t write separates me from the messages I wish to share and the healthy practice of jotting down my thoughts and experiences. Those thoughts and experiences may not come again. Reflecting on this quote from Into the Woods, I find myself with renewed vigor for writing and encouraging others to share their own thoughts and works.
What talent or passion have you been neglecting?
“Opportunity is not a lengthy visitor.”
I have wrestled with finding time to take a break for myself. Creating opportunities for quiet, peaceful time with my family has also failed to make its way into my schedule. If I don’t instigate those calm, restorative moments with my family and for myself, who will?
Please take time for yourself and those you love. Peace has to begin in our hearts and homes before it can be found all over Earth. Continue reading “Visits from Opportunity – Wise Words Wednesday”
Less than three sips into my first glass of New Years Eve wine, I knocked over the entire cup in a fit of excitement to show my “good” coat to a friend. The wine flowed right on over to the corner of a jacket laying on the table. It was NOT my coat. AAAHHHH!
I quickly wiped the coat off and dried up the table.
Then the worry set in.
I HAD to find the owner of the coat.
What if it was their “good” coat?
What if they yelled at me?
What if they told everyone I was a raving drunk, who destroyed their coat and any hopes of a happy new year? (I may be exaggerating, but I really was worried.)
I asked everyone I saw if the coat was thiers, but had no luck locating its owner.
I was just about to trudge the walk of shame to the front of the dance and kindly ask the amazing band singer if I could borrow his microphone. I needed to find the owner of that coat. As I went back to grab the coat, the cutest, little brunette was getting something from the purse next to THE COAT.
Continue reading “Spilling into 2018”
“The Serenity Prayer” is one that I pray a lot. By “a lot” I mean, I have seriously considered tattooing it to my forearm because it is that much a part of my day.
Recently I found “The OTHER Serenity Prayer” on Pinterest.
It goes like this:
God, grand me the serenity to stop beating myself up for
not doing things perfectly,
the courage to forgive myself because I am working on doing better, and the wisdom to know that you already love me just the way I am.
What a perfect prayer!
If you feel like you are struggling with your own imperfections, say this prayer for yourself.
If there is someone in your life who could use a reminder that we are all works in progress, please share this with them.
I am grateful for the wisdom and understanding this prayer brings. Bring it to someone you love, especially yourself.
Serenity is gained one forgiving, loving moment at a time. Take the time to love and forgive yourself and spread the same grace to those you meet.
By: Melanie A. Peters
P.S. Serenity cannot be found until we discover love.
via Daily Prompt: Brave
Sometimes the fear won’t go away, so you’ll have to do it afraid.
As a matter of habit, I don’t watch the news. My husband does though, so the news is on EVERY morning. We start our day catching up on the shootings, bombings, trash-talk Tweets, and the generally tragic state of our world.
I would much rather start the day by watching something like “Friends” or “I Love Lucy,” but hubby would remind me that it is important to know what’s going on in the world and then change the channel.
The story that has been most bothersome to me lately is the one of the four soldiers killed in Niger on October 4th. Victims of an apparent ambush, these men died serving our nation and world as they worked to stop ISIS.
As they served, those men knew that there was much to fear. Their service was intended to assist in ending the evil of ISIS. They were most surely afraid, but their actions reflected the definition of bravery.
Do you know the power of “Yet”?
The Bad-Ass Librarians of Timbuktu is a book by Joshua Hammer. I learned about The Bad-Ass Librarians of Timbuktu on Goodreads and I want desperately to read it. However, after laboring through the first few chapters, I realized that I do not possess enough knowledge about Timbuktu, Mali, or the plight of the Islamic peoples as they have been tortured by Al Qaeda. The words of Adbel Kader Haidara, the original Bad-Ass, were beautiful, terrifying at times, and wonderfully descriptive, but my ignorance of how to pronounce and process many of the words left me feeling lost. After page 70, I put the book back on my “To Read” list. I just wasn’t smart enough for this book.
When I told my husband about being confounded by the book, he told me that I would get it; I just might have to read it a few times. He was hinting at the “Yet.”
A few days after re-shelving The Bad-Ass Librarians, I was speaking to my friend Donna. We were discussing The End of Your Life Book Club and the reads that were recommended in it. It was fun to compare what she had read to what I had read and what we both still wanted to read. It was then that I told her about Hammer’s book. I shared my disappointment in myself for not being educated enough to read the book. That is when Donna reminded me of the power of “Yet.” Continue reading “The Power of “Yet””
I am always impressed by the way some individuals are able to encapsulate the emotions that are shared by literally millions. The sadness that has invaded our lives and hearts in recent weeks has largely been caused by fear.
The following are posts or lyrics of others that I have found quite profound. Hopefully their words will eliminate any insecurities that you may have about isolation and separation because of the fear that has invaded your thoughts and emotions.
Kelly Sanders Smith, a friend and fellow teacher, shared this thought on Facebook and opened my eyes to a sad reality about what the generations after mine sadly consider as common place.
Cami Walker, my friend and author of 29 Gifts: How a Month of Giving Can Change Your Life, recently shared this post on www.29gifts.org. I love how she is taking tragedy and turning into a positive challenge of love. Continue reading “Thoughts on Fear – Thoughtful Thursday”
There were so many things I wanted to title this post… “Long Live the Tree Books,” “Becoming a Watch Deputy,” and (the title that almost made the cut) “Buying Books We Knock Over.” (I call dibs on all these titles for future posts.)
This past spring Aunt Carol recommended that I read The End of Your Life Book Club by Will Schwalbe. The End of Your Life Book Club is a memoir of the books Will and his mother read and bonded over during her diagnosis and treatment for Stage IV pancreatic cancer.
I am not gonna lie. Reading this book made me feel smarter because Will and his mother Mary Anne read some AMAZING stuff. (I have an entire Goodreads book shelf dedicated to books I learned about in The End of Your Life Book Club.) It wasn’t so much the knowledge about the books they read that increased my intelligence; it was the way Will conveyed the powerful life lessons fostered by their reading, conversations, and the tremendous responsibility assumed because of their reading that made me feel smarter.
Will was announced as the author of the 2017 Capital READ in June. I was so excited! The date went immediately on my calendar and I ordered a new hardback copy of The End of Your Life Book Club from Amazon Marketplace.
When my copy arrived, I discovered that I had unwittingly ordered an autographed copy. I was bummed because I wanted my copy to be signed when I met Will. (Silly thing to be bummed about, right?) My signed copy ended up being a cool thing. Continue reading “Responsible Reading and Radical Listening – The Time I Met Will Schwalbe”
Every night when I go to bed my mind floods with the shortcomings of my day. Most of the time my distractions stem from my own mistakes. The snippy words barked at my children in frustration. The letter I forgot to send. The phone call that I meant to make. The laundry in the washing machine never made it to the dryer. Did I feed the dog?
If I let my mistakes run rampant, my mind never lets me sleep. The only consolation I find is in the knowledge that I am basically good. Yeah, I am weak. Yes, I am full of mistakes. But, for the most part, I am basically good. Continue reading “Basically good…like everybody else”
When something great happens, we just have to share it!
I put in the appropriate amount of change, typed in the assigned number (305), and pressed the “Select” button. As I waited the spiraling of the dispenser stimulated my salivating taste buds. When the spiral had reached the end of the shelf, Woohoo! TWO packages of peanut M&M’s fell into the dispensing tray. I HAD to take a picture of my vending machine jackpot. (There is no better inspiration for a post than free candy.)
Great things happen in our lives everyday. Surprises and blessings occur when we least expect them. Keep your heart and mind open to recognizing these “jackpots.”
I shared my winnings with my friend Christina. Sharing my story and the candy was my second double bonus of the day.
If you find yourself with a vending machine jackpot, a lucky penny in the parking lot, or stumbling across a shareable success, double your money and deal out some luck to someone else. Be sure to share your loot with someone who could use a win. 😉
Have you ever hit a vending machine jackpot? What did you win? How did you celebrate your victory?
By: Melanie A. Peters
P.S. The candy really did just fall out. I did not shake the machine or anything.
P.P.S. Personally, I am scared to shake vending machines because I am afraid they will set off an alarm and everyone will know I was trying to rob the vending machine.