The Power of a Decision

Growing up, my mother made sure we got to visit all our relatives on a regular basis. Every once in a while Dad would come too.

I didn’t know it then, but family ties have a great deal to do with how we live our lives, whether it is immediate family or extended. As a youngster I looked up to a lot of cousins, and aunts and uncles, especially those who emulated Christ’s character.

I’ve always wondered what the phrase “family ties” means. At first glance you might visualize all your first and second cousins tied to each other, and to you with one big long invisible thread. Or you may think of the less literal interpretation, the genealogy connection.

Lately I’ve been thinking of “ties” in terms of how our decisions affect the ones we love. Our decisions resemble a rock falling into a pool of water. The circular ripples echo outwardly and touch everyone from our inner circle onward. We forget about how people watch and learn from one another.

I believe that is why Jesus taught us so much about love. If we act out of love for God, for ourselves and others, our ripples are going to create joy, encouragement and generally build one another up (in the faith I hope). If we act out of selfishness our ripples can cause pain, concern and genuine discouragement.

What decisions are you making today that will spur your family on to greatness of character? What choices have you made lately that will strengthen your faith and your family’s?

We cannot hope to be the best we can be for ourselves, and our family without help from God. He gives us grace as we grow, and we must extend that same grace and patience, and prayer generously.

Making sound decisions (based on biblical principles) is a challenge. It is easy to give into status quo.

May I conclude with a sincere warning to those people who are near and dear?

Please watch what you say and do, someone’s future faith depends upon it.

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Cindy Against the Closet: one down, how many more to go?

I held my breath, closed my eyes and reached.  My first object taken off the shelf, Sunday, February 23rd, 2014, according to my new project adventure.  An old beige photo album measuring 11 1/2 by 11 1/4 inches, the kind with sticky pages.  A far cry from any scrap-booker dream.  Simply pull back the plastic sheeting, position the photo on the adhesive background and wha-la. Approximately 42 pictures in all.  Try pulling them off that adhesive after 25 years.

The Temptation:  to put the album in a box.                                                                     The Taboo:  (taking an object that has been forgotten for years, from one shelf to another)   The Problem: only to revisit it in some other closet down the road.

cindy, small image

1987

So instead, a trip down memory lane.

  • Our apple tree in full bloom in the front yard of our first home together.  It got cut down after we moved.  No, I couldn’t talk the new owners into building their front porch around it
  • Dating pictures of me, when perms were still in, one word – “fried”
  • Me, pregnant with our first child
  • Lloyd’s 30th birthday in the backyard
  • Russ Nelson, and Lloyd Palin up to their hips in Gull Lake,  waiting to be baptized by Pastor George, 1990
  • One of our last birthdays together, my sister and I.  Born on the same day, the same minute, two years apart.  With marriage, little people and homes quite a distance apart, we stopped celebrating them together, 1988

And now the task of sorting and deciding what pics to send whom.

The Plan of Attack:

  • Scan them.
  • Save them to a labeled desktop folder
  • Post your favorites to Facebook.
  • Send some nostalgia to friends via email.
  • Optional – upload the entire bunch to i-photo for editing and possible future projects
  • Post a couple hard copies to your bulletin board or fridge

The Challenge:  come up with some sort of photo project, and throw all the extra hard copies out.  When you can save them to a hard drive – why let them take up space on a shelf*(&^%$##?

The Question?  When was the last time I looked at that album?  Oh the silly things we hang onto.

The Key:  to make sure the next item I take off the shelf is slightly different.  Gotta keep it interesting.  And now I have a formula – so to speak.

Are you ready to take on a similar project?  Use my formula and let’s compare notes:)