Hope, Love, Relationship

Choice: When Love Is Hard

+Jeanne Takenaka @JeanneTakenaka

The boy’s attitude ballooned up bigger than our doorway as we rushed out for school this morning.

Teenage troubles, loss of a cell phone, Homecoming drama and hard decisions? They all coalesced to create a simmering heat beneath his normally unfettered surface.

I couldn’t wait for the boy to exit the car in the carpool line. Loving him was not the first thing on my mind.

I had my own bubbling mess of irritation threatening to destroy the quiet I envisioned for this day.

Continue reading “Choice: When Love Is Hard”

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God's Love, Identity, Perspective

Beauty: How Do You Define Beauty?

+Jeanne Takenaka @JeanneTakenaka

I have five decades of life under my proverbial belt. And still, there are days when I let the mirror try to tell me truth as it sees it.

The bad hair days . . .

The days when my face bears pimples (yes, at fifty, I still get these) . . .

The ever-enlarging pores on my face . . .

The rounding middle, flabby thighs . . .

The thinning hair that sports more gray as the boys grow older and try new things . . .

Continue reading “Beauty: How Do You Define Beauty?”

God, Perspective, Trusting God, Uncategorized

Homeless: A Heart Like Jesus

Home doormat

 

+Jeanne Takenaka @JeanneTakenaka

Can I be honest and say I am a cynic?

And I am convicted.

As I watched this video, I was challenged to think about what home is.

I’ve seen and given to people who were wearing new tennis shoes and decent-looking clothes, and I’ve questioned if they were really homeless, or if they were trying to turn a quick buck.

Continue reading “Homeless: A Heart Like Jesus”

Adoption, Family Relationships, Love

Family: Lessons Learned as a Family

Yellowstone boys hiking 2

By +Jeanne Takenaka @JeanneTakenaka

Last week’s Five Minute Friday word still has me thinking about family. It’s such a unique circle of relationships. And it’s lived out differently in each home.

As children, what we see in a family setting often defines what “family” should look like. Both of our boys love us, and are completely bonded with us.

Continue reading “Family: Lessons Learned as a Family”

Family Relationships, Five Minute Friday scribblings, Grace

Family: The Importance of Grace

 

Family life dance copy 2

By +Jeanne Takenaka @JeanneTakenaka

Our Five Minute Friday prompt this week is—FAMILY. 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!

FAMILY

Why do we let those we love the most see the ugliest versions of us?

Why is it we feel like we have the right to vent on those closest to us?

I’d never talk to my friends the way I talk to my boys. I never even talk to a telemarketer the way I talk with my boys sometimes.

And for that, I am ashamed.

I don’t speak disrespectfully to my friends, but I feel its okay, at least sometimes, to subject my husband, my boys, to that?

Especially with the males in my home, I must guard my words, and guide my tones of voice. They hear and understand love through RESPECT.

I need to be able to be real with my family. Let the guards down and share my fears, my hurts, my insecurities with them. But, I also need to love them well.

Boys n me 7-4

I can only do both well when I ‘m walking closely with Jesus. It’s when I allow Him to conform me to His image that I can love well, that I can speak truth with grace and still be real.

When I focus on being real without the love of Jesus guiding me? I will also be hurtful, at least sometimes.

When I seek to love my family without the freedom to speak truth, and share the real me? I squelch a part of myself, and that leads to me being unkind, disrespectful, and sometimes downright rude.

Loving well isn’t something I can do in my own strength, but it’s what I want to do with this amazing family God’s put around me.

One hubby who loves and leads us well. Who provides so much for us.

Two boys who I love to pieces and who love me with all of themselves. How can I love them less by withholding some of myself from them?

Mountain walk 2 copy

This family-life is a dance of grace and truth. It’s hard to walk in both constantly, but it’s what I want to do, because my guys are worth it.

And who knows, maybe my boys will see glimpses of Jesus in the loving and learn to love Him and others well as they grow older too. That’s my greatest hope.

What about you? What’s your favorite aspect of family? What’s your grace walk in your family life?

Be sure to visit Kate Motaung’s site for Five Minute Friday—Family

Change, Eternity, Grace, Marriage

Change: Love God, Love Others

 

Change word signBy +Jeanne Takenaka @JeanneTakenaka

***This is not my normal style of blog post. I had planned to post my third blog about perfection and good enough, and I will . . . next week. This week, I’m wrestling with all that’s happened in our country. So, I thought we could wrestle with it together. I’d love to hear your thoughts at the end of this post.*** 

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I have a confession to make. I struggle with the thought of being just one person. Just one Christian. For years, this struggle has left me in a place where I figured I can’t change the world, so I’ll focus on living the best Christian life I can. And I’ll ignore . . . not ignore, exactly . . . pray, but keep myself distanced from the world and all that is espouses.

Continue reading “Change: Love God, Love Others”

Control, Forgiveness, Intentional Living, Life, Perspective

Intentional: 5 Thoughts For Numbering Our Days

Framed sunset

By +Jeanne Takenaka @JeanneTakenaka

What would you do if you knew the number of your days?

Most of us know we’re going to die at some point in time. Many will die in their older years. But what if you discovered the number of days you had left to live? How would it change you?

Someone I’ve known for awhile received a diagnosis. This person has lived a full life . . . made wonderful friends, created cherished memories.

Continue reading “Intentional: 5 Thoughts For Numbering Our Days”

Five Minute Friday scribblings, Five Minute Friday: Tell, Living with Intention, Love

Tell: What Do My Actions Tell?

Mom Son hands

By +Jeanne Takenaka @JeanneTakenaka

My Five Minute Friday prompt this week is—Tell. 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 new 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!

Tell:

Much fills my mind this week as I ponder our Five Minute Friday word: Tell. Thinking of the sudden death of Robin Williams, and all the conversations surrounding his passing.

What do I TELL others? I tell my kids the things they need to get done (wash the dishes, please, sort the laundry, homework before play…..)

I tell my husband about my day

I tell my friends my struggles.

I use my words to convey normal, every day messages.

But what about those words that I treasure in my heart? Those thoughts I have about others, about Jesus? Those truths that both break my heart (Iraq) and mend it (God’s love heals the wounds).

Wild flowers burgundy amid white

How do I tell my love to those who people my life? What do my actions tell my family?

I’m convicted when I think about how I allow the tyranny of the urgent to overpower my ability to show my love to my family.

To tell them my love without ever using a word. I need to guard my time, lest it be taken up with the urgent rather than the important.

I need to tell my family I love them through my words, yes. But also through my undivided attention. Through my willingness to set aside a task and listen—just listen—and be a seat for a boy who climbs onto my lap.

I tell others my love when I show my care for them.

Yes, there is a place for words—to tell friends what they mean to me. To put into words the admiration, the gratitude in my heart, the joy which they add to my days.

Words mean so much more when followed up with actions.

What do my actions tell others?

What about you? How do you tell others of your care for them? What actions speak love to you?

Kate Motaung Five Minute Friday: Tell