Five Minute Friday scribblings, Friendship, Relationship

Visit: What Comes In a Visit

Birds visiting

By +Jeanne Takenaka @JeanneTakenaka

My Five Minute Friday prompt this week is—VISIT. This largely unedited “rough draft” form of writing stretches this perfectionist, in the best of ways. I write for five minutes on a given topic. If you’re interested in learning more about 5-Minute Fridays, check out our hostess, Kate Motaung’s site. Or, click on the link at the bottom of this post. As you read my simpler Friday posts, I hope you’ll join in the conversation!

VISIT

Life can keep us so busy we forget the art of reminding people how important they are. I’ve been thinking about how busy life can get, and wondering. Is this how God intended us to pass our days?

I find myself caught up in getting my house organized, loving my boys well, cleaning, running errands, cooking meals, and writing as time allows. But with all this structure and focus on my to-dos, am I missing out on opportunities to spend time with the important people in my life?

I have a sweet friend who drops by, unannounced on some days. She doesn’t usually stay long, but we always enjoy catching up on each other’s lives and laughing together. Sharing a hug. And you know what? I always feel better after she’s filled some space in my day. Because that is what she’s done. She’s filled me. She’s let me know that I matter to her by giving me some of her time.

I’m blessed by her visits.

Friends visiting

I’ve tried to have that kind of visiting time with the Lord too. Not just sitting, reading the Bible, saying an obligatory prayer and reading a devotion or working on a Bible study and marking it off my list.

Sometimes, I picture Him sitting across from me, sharing a cup of coffee. He does drink coffee, doesn’t He? And Him listening as I pour my thoughts on paper. As I pray for the people He’s placed on my heart. Listening to my struggles, my joys, my heartaches, my laughter.

I love the thought of visiting with Jesus.

Florida sunset 1

On those days when my heart is fully focused on Him, I’m the one who comes away with joy, with a sense of full-ness, knowing that He came to spend time with me. Because I matter to him.  He cherishes me—and each of His children—in ways we can’t understand.

Jesus is always ready for a visit. Have you shared a cuppa joe with Him today?

What about you? How do you show others they matter to you? What do you do to feed your relationship with Jesus?

Kate Motaung’s Five Minute Friday post: Visit

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Dreams, Life, Living with Intention

Dreams: What Makes Dreams Come True?

Dreaming doing

By +Jeanne Takenaka @JeanneTakenaka

For years, I dreamed of writing a book. But, fear kept me from trying. Fear that I couldn’t be creative enough to come up with good plots and characters, or good enough to actually interest readers, or . . .

Continue reading “Dreams: What Makes Dreams Come True?”

Love Languages, Marriage, Mothering, Relationship

Marriage: 6 Tips For Staying Connected

Ski Slope in morning

By +Jeanne Takenaka @JeanneTakenaka

I sat beside my hubby thirty feet above the ground, a blanket of snow glittering beneath us. As the chairlift moved us upward, I glanced over at the man I’ve shared the last twenty years of my life with. I know him, I love him, but we don’t always have time to connect. When I looked at him, I was convicted by the thought that we hadn’t connected on a soul-level all week.

Yes, there were good reasons, including a three day business trip. But are they good reasons…..really?

Continue reading “Marriage: 6 Tips For Staying Connected”

Five Minute Friday scribblings, Infertility

When: When God Speaks

Desert Road

By +Jeanne Takenaka @JeanneTakenaka

My Five Minute Friday prompt this week is—WHEN. This largely unedited “rough draft” form of writing stretches this perfectionist, in the best of ways. I write for five minutes on a given topic. If you’re interested in learning more about 5-Minute Fridays, check out our hostess, Kate Motaung’s site. Or, click on the link at the bottom of this post. As you read my simpler Friday posts, I hope you’ll join in the conversation!

WHEN

I’d been staying with my friend’s children for three days when she and her husband came home with their fourth baby.

For three days I’d gotten to put on the mommy hat, and enjoy a few hugs, cleaning, playing with children. Tasting motherhood.

When she came home, those sweet children wanted to see their baby sister. They climbed all over their parents. I sat in my borrowed room, trying not to cry at the pain of infertility coming back to smack me.

When I made the three hour drive home, I shared my joy for my friend and my own pain with the Lord. Hot desert wind blew through the windows of my car.

Baby booties and lambie

I asked the Lord, “When, Lord? When is it my turn to be a mom?”

Much to my surprise, God answered. Not quite audibly, but words spoken to my heart. “I will give you a child.” The emphasis was on the “I”.

In my crazy desire for motherhood, had I made up that six word sentence? It stopped my words cold. I prayed. I pondered. I drove in silence. I shared them with my husband, who believed they were God’s words for me.

God, in his sweetness, spoke them again, a few days later. “I will give you a child.”

My heart about palpitated at the emphasis. There was no “if.” Instead, it was a “when.”

Baby toes 2 copy

God speaks to each us in different ways. Seldom audibly. But when He gives a message, it’s up to us to believe it and act on it.

Those words infused me with hope as I took on a job at our church. And then fifteen months later, resigned when we learned we were going to be parents via adoption.

When God speaks, learn to listen. And more, choose to believe.

What about you? When has God imprinted a message on your heart? What did you do with it?

Visit Kate Motaung’s Five Minute Friday post

Breathe, Life, Perspective, Stress

Stress: Choosing to Breathe

Rainy day road

By +Jeanne Takenaka @JeanneTakenaka

The door slammed as boys clambered out of the car. And gave me my first full breath since my guys had awakened on this battle-of-the-wills morning. Sniping and snarking had sapped my joy and irritation had replaced it.

God tried to get my attention with a beautiful sunrise, but one boy had already been snappish by then, and I ignored the colors.

Well, not totally.

Continue reading “Stress: Choosing to Breathe”

Five Minute Friday scribblings, Life, Trials

Keep: The Choosing

Is 263 copy

By +Jeanne Takenaka @JeanneTakenaka

My Five Minute Friday prompt this week is—KEEP. This largely unedited “rough draft” form of writing stretches this perfectionist, in the best of ways. I write for five minutes on a given topic. If you’re interested in learning more about 5-Minute Fridays, check out our hostess, Kate Motaung’s site. Or, click on the link at the bottom of this post. As you read my simpler Friday posts, I hope you’ll join in the conversation!

KEEP

As I saw our Five Minute Friday prompt, this verse kept coming to mind. There are days (like today) where I’ve longed to know and walk in God’s perfect peace.

On those days when there are more to-do’s than there is day, I feel stress. When I’m on my own with the kids for the week, when unexpected events steal my time—distract me from my plans—these are the days when God’s peace seems far away.

These are also the days when I tend to become more focused on the day than on the Giver of the day. How do I keep my eyes on Him in the midst of crazy? In the midst of sick kids and planning for trips we may not be able to take? In the midst of taking care of car repairs and not getting the things done that weigh on my heart and mind like a wet wool blanket?

frosty morning copy

When the diagnoses come that steal everything else, they don’t have to steal peace, permanently. If I’m trusting God for His best outcome.

I’m learning it’s discipline. It’s choosing.

It’s in the choosing that I can know God’s peace. Choosing to trust Him when life goes haywire. Choosing to believe His word when my days go in directions I never anticipated, and I can hardly breathe for the stress and the busyness of them.

mountain at dusk

When I keep my eyes on Him, when I choose to believe that what God says is absolute truth? That’s when I can know his perfect peace.

This is how I can walk in perfect peace. And I do it very imperfectly this side of heaven. I probably always will.

So, I’ll just continue to practice keeping my mind stayed upon Him.

What about you? What are the peace-stealers in your life? How do you keep your eyes on Jesus when life doesn’t cooperate? 

Visit Kate Motaung’s Five Minute Friday—Keep.

Dependence, Enough, Fear, Pride, Relationship

Weakness: Act Strong or Ask For Help?

Destin late afternoon

By +Jeanne Takenaka @JeanneTakenaka

“Why is weakness something we fear so strongly?”

I was reading Kara Tippetts’ blog, Mundane Faithfulness last week, and she shared about those days you just work to get through. At the end of her post, she asked some questions, but this one stopped me hard.

Continue reading “Weakness: Act Strong or Ask For Help?”