The Old Rolled Up Mat

A few days ago, I started seeing the carpet in the leg well of my desk was not flat. Immediately I opened the Amazon app to search for carpet mats for desks. When I saw the prices, I remembered I still have one I’d retired two years ago due to it not staying in place. I’d rolled it up and stored it in my garage. Oh, my. It was impossible to get it to lie flat. I used my heat gun, but it did little good. But I remembered the motto: Consume it, wear it out, make do or do without.

There was nothing wrong with the mat. It had simply conformed to being rolled in storage. It’s now on the floor in my office and I know it will eventually be what I need it to be and I can remove the heavy objects flattening it. When I look at it, I’m reminded how we can be changed and conformed in today’s culture. Sometimes we curl into ourselves because we are overwhelmed and confused. We withdraw from life rather than turn to God for direction. We can become like the rolled up mat in a dark corner.

God doesn’t forget about us! He can transform us, remove all the lumps and bumps with truth. He often sends help through another person. He will find a way to draw us out of the dark corner we have created into His light. The things of this world can be confusing and difficult to find the right answers to our questions. We won’t find answers in the world. Only in God. Only in trusting Him.

Things that are in direct conflict with the Bible are easy to spot. Things that are not, the things that truly tie us in knots, are those that can cripple us with indecision. Those are the times when we should turn to God. Pray. Read the Bible. God will show the way if we remain patient and diligent.

“Be careful that no one takes you captive through philosophy and empty deceit based on human tradition, based on the elements of the world, rather than Christ.” Colossians 2:8 CSB.

Lifting my cup of tea with gratitude and thankfulness for the rolled up carpet mat now gracing my office. And thanking Him for taking this tightly knotted and rolled up woman and reshaping her into who He created her to be.

GIVE IT TO GOD

One of the most difficult things I’ve learned over the past few years is how to give my concerns to God. Easily said, but not always easy to do. I used to tell God I was giving Him something, but found days or hours later, I was worrying and fussing about the same thing all over again!

I have a prayer wall. On it, I hang scriptures that speak to me, prayers, and my concerns. These concerns are the things that can suck me into fear and worry…things I can’t really control. God gives me wisdom to know there are steps I can take to assist with certain things like health and finances, but in order not to worry, but to trust God, I need to put my faith in Him and let Him carry these heavy burdens for me. God gives me a peace I cannot describe other than as a peace that passes understanding about these things…once I have given them to Him.

What is the key to giving all these to God and NOT TAKING THEM BACK? For me it was remembering I would not give something to any of my earthly friends and then snatch it back again. Being able to give God our burdens is a privilege God grants us. So we give back to Him by trusting Him to take care of them. Taking them back means we don’t trust Him.

Lifting my cup of tea as I watch dark storm clouds pass overhead in a heavily overcast sky. The darkness moves across the sky but not a drop of rain falls. I’m always amazed when I watch what God is doing through my office window. He is powerful. He can do what He says He can do. So I expect to see God do greater things in the days to come!

Finish the Book?

Lately I’ve been feeling the desire to finish a book I’d been working on with many different starts over a few years. Perhaps it is the winter months drawing nearer making me long to sit at my computer for hours and write about characters in a different world than what we are living in today. I want an escape.

I even pulled up the old manuscript and read through some of the scenes and felt excited. I began writing seriously in 2001, publishing articles in Chicken Soup for the Soul. My first was published in a coffee table book filled with other stories and photographs. It was a piece to honor my mother and I’m grateful she was still alive at the time. From these shorter pieces, I began to take online classes to learn how to write fiction.

Oh, the rules! There were so many cautions for new writers not to do. Rules that should be followed if one ever wanted to be published. Honestly it was so much to absorb and it began to dampen my spirit. The publishing world was a huge place dominated by publishers who were overburdened with stacks of manuscripts. Most submissions were returned with a brief canned rejection letter.

About this time small ebook publishers began to rise. There was one that appealed to me so I decided to send in my first completed book. It was accepted and I was assigned an editor who worked with me to make the book publishable. The book did well and I submitted my second one several months later. It, too, was published and did better than the first. But I was a little tired of having to write sexy scenes to be a romantic suspense writer. So I chucked the rules and wrote the book I wanted to write. Emotional, suspenseful, and sweet romance. This was my best selling book ever. The reviews were good.

At this time, the publishing world again began to change. Amazon made it possible for writers to self-publish their books. I decided this was where I belonged. I received the rights to all my previously published books, made a few changes, bought new covers, and put released them under my own rights. I wouldn’t suggest this for anyone who has not already learned the ropes about publishing by working under an editor.

I continued to write a 4 book series of inspirational romantic suspense books, a nonfiction book, and two shorter stories. Until I hit a writer’s block and the desire to write faded. I struggled with the decision on whether to retire or not finally making the decision to do so in 2020 and removed all books from sale on Amazon.

And now the desire to finish a book has risen. Only God knows what my future holds. I’m trusting Him. Lifting my cup of tea with a smile and a hope. May your day be filled with hope, my friends.

Morning Inspiration – Trust in God

If there is one thing I’ve learned over the years since my husband traveled to Heaven, it is to trust in God and not to lean on my own understanding. I’ve learned that He is the One I can trust and depend upon. And my relationship with Him has grown significantly and continues to grow.

“I’ll say it again – it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich person to enter the Kingdom of God!” (Matthew 19:24 NLT)

I’ve had to learn to give up things I considered riches in order to see the true riches in my life. Current culture makes it easy to cling to possessions and strive and desire more, more, more. But should these things be taken away, will we still feel secure? Where do we place our security? Where do we place our trust? Who do we thank when we receive material riches? Food for thought! As for me, I’ve learned God is my true wealth. He has provided an eternal inheritance which is beyond my comprehension! I believe God provides for my needs, and mostly these blessings come from God working through others.

Lifting my cup of tea and wishing you all a fabulous day! I’ll leave you with this prayer in my devotional today “Jesus, please give me the wisdom to manage or multiply the resources You have blessed me with. And keep me from ever looking for peace and safety in money. Amen”