May Positivity Challenge – Don’t Believe Everything You Think
Peter Pan is a story about never growing up and believing in the unbelievable. When I was a kid, my younger sisters had a VHS of Peter Pan starring Sandy Duncan. They loved that movie. We watched it A LOT, but the scene that sticks out most in my mind is the one where Tinkerbell’s light is going out and Peter Pan begs the audience to clap and cheer so that Tinkerbell would know they believed in her. Eventually, Tinkerbell’s light grew brighter; the music swelled and Peter Pan’s enthusiasm grew, knowing that darn good and well the kids at home JUST HAD to be clapping and cheering their little hearts out to bring Tink back.
Well, here’s the thing. Not everyone was cheering. (In my house we were not all cheering because we had seen the film 12,867 times.) Most were not cheering because they knew that Tinkerbell was just a light on the television screen and no amount of in-home enthusiasm was going to change that bulb’s brightness. The unbelievers chose not to support the idea that there was a fairy dying from unbelief of children.
Okay?!? Right now you are thinking, where is the positivity here? Why are you killing off Tinkerbell? Continue reading “May Positivity Challenge – Don’t Believe Everything You Think”
“It’s hard to beat the person who never gives up.” – Babe Ruth
You seriously can’t beat someone who never gives up.
It’s that whole “never” thing.
If “never” happens, they “never” record a loss.
Babe Ruth learned a lot about losing things early in life as he faced poverty, being an orphan, and loneliness. In his adulthood, he was successful because he refused to give into the expectations of others. He sought only to follow his own dreams. Of course, he had weaknesses and made mistakes, but Babe Ruth has never been known as someone who caved easily. And that is why his legacy has never dimmed in the realm of baseball.
What about you?
Can you say you are undefeated?
Can you say that you have stuck to your guns?
Maybe it’s the weather, or the new year, or taxes, or this darn head cold, but I have really been fearful lately. I find lingering doubts and worries popping up in my mind and permeating the corners of my heart.
There isn’t any one thing that my fears are focused on, but a lot of little things hindering my happiness.
Worry about friends who are ill. Worry about those who’ve lost loved ones recently. Worry about my own children’s health. Worry about my kids and getting along with others. Worry about being the best wife and mom I can be. Worry about meeting the needs of my students. Worry about our late library books. Worry about what to make for supper. Worry that I just know I am forgetting something… Silly, silly worries.
For all the millions of things I have to worry about, there is one number that packs a powerfully positive punch…365.
The phrase “do not be afraid” is written in the Bible 365 times. Continue reading “365 Reminders – Wise Words Wednesday”
It’s only when we fail to stand our ground that we cave.
Only when we fail to be true to ourselves, we cave.
When we fail to be honest, we cave.
We fail to believe; we cave.
Fail only when we cave.
The times when I have felt least successful are those when I felt I caved to insecurity or scrutiny of others. It was in allowing the foundation of what I knew was right to crumble. I let my emotions cascade in an avalanche of uncertainty around me. I caved.
One instance from junior high, where I personally caved, still haunts me.
In 6th grade, recess changed the social dynamic for everyone at my school. The 6th grade girls were assigned the parking lot between church and our grade school along with the 7th and 8th grade girls for recess. There were no soccer goals, basketball hoops, or kickball fields in this lot. As someone who always loved sports and being active, this move was not an exciting one for me. The other girls seemed perfectly happy to sit on the steps next to church and clump in tightly knit circles gossiping away our precious free time. Recess was not much fun as far as I was concerned, but I made the most of it floating from group to group, checking to see what the topic of conversation might be, or if there was a chance of athletic ambition from anyone.
One day I ran to talk to one of the 8th graders, who played basketball on the school team with me. She was talking to two others girls and I was excited to see if they wanted to talk basketball.
As soon as I entered their circle, one girl took me by the arm and turned me around. “You are like a wart. We want to burn you out of here,” she said and pushed me in the opposite direction of their conversation. Continue reading “Cave”
Hagrid is a trustworthy, gentle giant in J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter series. He is the caretaker of Hogwarts and has a soft spot for creatures that most would consider terrifying or hazardous, but when it comes to standing up for what is right, no one would ever doubt which side Hagrid would be on.
In the books Hagrid, Harry, and the people of the wizarding world faced some pretty treacherous villains and situations. With each challenge came the opportunity to be steadfast and brave. As a reader, it was breathtaking to encounter the harrowing battles and escapes. Always fighting the fight between good and evil, Hagrid and company were perpetually prepared to face what came next.
“What’s comin’ will come and we’ll meet it when it does.” Continue reading “What’s Comin’ Will Come… – Wise Words Wednesday”
Whatever your stance on tattoos, the power of self-expression through ink cannot be denied. Just as writers have put words to paper for centuries, tattoo artists have given power to the markings on their human palletes.
Recently our friend Evan experienced a very dramatic change in his life. Like most, he was angry and confused at first, but after time to think things through, Evan has started the task of moving past the hurt and letting the emotional wounds become battle scars.
As part of his healing process Evan chose a way to make God’s word a permanent reminder that the plan for us is bigger than we can ever understand. He chose the simple scriptural emblem of “Isaiah 14:27.”
Nothing can stop God’s plan for your life.
Continue reading “Inking God’s Plan”
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”
Pig Play: Driven by Emotion, Inspired by Tears
Guest Post by Wade Orscheln
In the last few days I have been inspired not by a paid motivational speaker, not by my boss, not by a famous person or athlete, not even by an adult, but by the great youth we have in agriculture. The last few days I have found myself running back and forth from home to Sedalia trying to watch my FFA students exhibit their livestock at the Missouri State Fair. Which reminds me that I must thank my principal for letting me out of those beginning of the year teacher meetings so I could attend these shows. These kids give me hope in our future. They showed me a passion and drive I thought that had been lost in our American youth.
Maybe I’m becoming soft with age, but several times during the youth swine show I found myself drying my eyes. I got to witness a blind young man with the help of a friend who served as his eyes exhibit the 4-H reserve champion barrow. I watched as his friend embraced him with a big hug. The smile on his face and the tears in the eyes of the crowd was priceless. I just wish for a moment he could visually see how great his duroc barrow really was. I wish he knew how motivational he was. He didn’t just show the 4-H reserve champion barrow but showed the world that a disability doesn’t have to disable.
I got the opportunity to listen to a judge speak before selecting the youth show overall champion barrow. He spoke about, that what was going on in the swine barn that day wasn’t about the livestock at all, that it was about the kids in the show ring. After his speech I witnessed a young man get the slap that every livestock exhibitor dreams of. That slap that the judge gives your animal when choosing the grand champion. Instantly the young man wrapped his arms around the judge and broke into tears. These tears were tears of joy and passion. Continue reading “Pig Play: Driven by Emotion, Inspired by Tears”
Moms are the ones who need capes.
Recently I rescued a little boy from the top of a climbing wall at the local park. His cape was hung up on the back side of the wall and he couldn’t get it over. His arms were draped over the wall behind him at odd angles. It was a frightening moment.
The incident was not, however, unexpected. I had witnessed the boy and his mother arguing about the need to take off the cape while he played. She said, “Take it off.” He said, “No.” It was obvious that she wanted to enjoy their time at the park so she let him have his way.
When I heard his cry for help, I was only about 20 feet away. Without hesitation I ran to him and said, “Don’t be scared. I am a mommy and I am going to get you down.” I lifted him high enough for the snag of the cape to release and his arms to fall down to me. Gently, I set him down so as to not scare him or invade his space too much. His poor mother was coming our way. She thanked me and said, “Wow, you were fast.” I told her it was no problem.
The boy still would not take off the cape. He ran and climbed up to the top of the playground. His cape caught on the slide as he slid downward. Another scary moment. His mama took the cape this time. He cried on the side of the playground until he decided it was better to play than pout.
As I packed up my own little villains, I walked past that poor mom. She thanked me again. I replied, “Moms are the ones who need capes.” She said, “You got that right.” Continue reading “Why Moms Need Capes – Wise Words Wednesday”
There is nothing worse than finding out an idea was a “bad” idea. There are ideas that demand such confidence that is is painful to not have faith in their potential. It is only when we give that idea a chance that we find out if we are visionary or wrong.
Sheldon Cooper’s character rarely allows doubt to filter into his decision making process. When a notion is questionable, Dr. Cooper turns to what he knows – science. When science can’t solve it, he blames the conundrum on the imperfections of humanity.
When I am unable to work out a problem, or I begrudgingly discover an idea was not so great, I have to turn to what I do know – my gut instinct. (My attachment to science isn’t as strong as Dr. Cooper’s.) Continue reading “Wrongness and Visionaries – Wise Words Wednesday”