The Day I Lied to the Bagger at the Commissary

I don’t know what it is, but I have a really big issue with lying– at least when the lies, great or small, come from myself.

It’s hard for me to “fib” to my kiddo about why she can’t have a piece of Mama’s fancy chocolate because “They are all gone,” when in actuality I have two more precious pieces rationed and hidden away on the top of the refrigerator for emergencies.

I absolutely cannot lie to my husband about ANYTHING because it makes me feel so convicted– even if its something small like “I didn’t have TIME to do the dishes today” when I spent some quality moments resting in the recliner and keeping our toddler alive.

But I remember a couple of months ago when I did outright, blatantly lie to the bagger at the commissary. [Read more…]

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Hurry Up and Wait– And how to deal (Well, kinda)

“Hurry up and wait is my favorite part of army wife life,” said no milspouse ever. 

Ain’t THAT the truth?!?

My family is currently in yet (another!) hurry up and wait season. And it is about as much fun as talking on the phone to Tricare while shopping at the commissary on payday.

Gag. Me. With. A. Spoon.

See, we are right on the cusp of a PCS. Unlike some of our previous PCS’s, this one is gonna be kind of hard on our heart. Other duty stations, it was “time” to go and we were ready. Deuces, let’s roll America!

But this time, I can’t help but wonder how much housing is going to charge us for the fingernail claw marks I likely will leave on the front porch as my husband drags me to the car on departure day. #KiddingNotKidding

Hurry Up & WaitIt seems like milspouse life is just FULL of the hurry up and wait moments. We want things to hurry up (or slow down!) but we still have to wait for it to happen (or deal with it when it comes.) Waiting for orders. Waiting for deployment to end. Waiting for deployment to START so we can get closer to the end. Waiting for the promotion. Yes, hurry up and wait is very much a part of life.

So, what’s a milspouse to do in those harder-than-usual hurry up and wait moments? Here are some of my personal ideas.

Want to read more? Pop on over to Army Wife Network for tips on how to deal with the hurry up and wait seasons of life (And don’t worry, they apply to everyone, not just military spouses!)

Dear readers, are you in a hurry up and wait season of life right now? If so, how do you cope? Please don’t be shy; chime in and leave a comment below.

Hopefully, by the time this post publishes and then hits social media, we will be elbow deep into the “go-time” season and hurry up and wait (at least this round!) will be closed for us. Until that point, I suppose I should sign off– because after all, I have a lot of hurrying up and waiting to do!

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For A Time Such As This #WilcoWednesday

Welcome to Wilco Wednesday! (Side note: I know it’s not Wednesday… yet. But this blog has been in my queue for months now, and it keeps missing schedule… So ok, technology manual publish it is!) If you are a new around these parts, “Wilco” is Army-speak for “Will Comply.” Think of it as saying “Roger, God. Got it. Will do.”  So that is what Wednesday here at 7 Days Time is all about– exploring his decrees and seeking guidance for what complying with Him looks like in everyday life. The best part? He loves us for who we are, not what we do.  Remember: He doesn’t want perfection, just obedience. Share. Enjoy. Interact. And let’s respond to God’s call with  a hearty “Wilco, Lord!”  Help me welcome a very wise and loving, prayerful friend of ours, Cheryl as she shares a message you don’t want to miss. 

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“For God’s gifts and his call are irrevocable.” ~Romans 11:29

After being an intercessor for over 20 years, I never thought it would be hard to pray, but it was. There was so much pain.  I relied on the prayers of others to carry me through. My mother was raised Catholic and repeated the prayer she had frequently heard in mass: “Lord have mercy.”  We both prayed for God’s mercy.

Only 6 weeks after I had been diagnosed with cancer, had surgery and was on the road to recovery, my mother was diagnosed with stage four bone cancer.  It’s a very painful disease.

Many days were spent trying to control my mother’s pain.  I intervened often and, if necessary, aggressively, to make sure my mother was comfortable.  I held her in my arms and cried with her as we waited for the nurses to bring the medication that would make the pain bearable.  I helped her bathe, brush her teeth, eat and drink, and even put on her makeup and curled her hair when she was up to it.  I arranged Hospice. I helped to keep her medications straight.  I requested oxygen when it seemed necessary. And more… [Read more…]

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The Difference between Grilling Steak & Working for Jesus

In college, I took a Meat Science class. (Don’t freak out… I was an animal science major at Kansas State…)

I learned a lot of interesting things in that class, most of which I have (unfortunately) not retained long term. HOWEVER, there is one statement from our rather feisty-old-man-professor Dr. Hunt that I will never forget.

We were talking about the different “doneness” of meat, specifically steak. He told us this, which has since stuck in my brain for nearly a decade: [Read more…]

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Do SOMETHING

If you are parent, it comes as no surprise that we learn A LOT of lessons from our tiny-to-medium-sized humans.

Like how you can eat 2.34 bites of yogurt and be “full…”

How loopholes can be a saving grace, especially if it ends in laughter: “I didn’t kick the dog. I touched him with my foot!”

And that sometimes, choosing to do something is the right choice.  [Read more…]

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The Shepherd Or… #WilcoWednesday

Welcome to Wilco Wednesday! If you are a new around these parts, “Wilco” is Army-speak for “Will Comply.” Think of it as saying “Roger, God. Got it. Will do.”  So that is what Wednesday here at 7 Days Time is all about– exploring his decrees and seeking guidance for what complying with Him looks like in everyday life. The best part? He loves us for who we are, not what we do.  Remember: He doesn’t want perfection, just obedience. Share. Enjoy. Interact. Please help me welcome a passionate follower of Jesus, and a very wise woman, Sammie– as she shares one of my favorite faith-based illustrations. 
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Have you ever heard a sermon that just impressed you so much it stayed with you for a long time? You know the kind I mean, where the Pastor waxes bold on the efficacy of following The Shepherd – “I am the Shepherd and my sheep know my voice.” (John 10:27)

That’s an interesting concept; One that catches our imagination on Sunday mornings and provokes our minds to aspirations of walking the walk as well as talking the talk.  But if you are like me, as well intended as I may be, my week gets busy, the days fly by – there’s so much to do. I’m stressed about this and/or that and before I know it my devotions are off schedule. The Wheels of my Spiritual Life seem to roll along with one side a little flat. Or worse, I become stalled altogether.  I ponder… “Now, what did the Pastor say about the Shepherd and His sheep?  Wish I could remember the details!” 

One morning, during a busy season of my life,  my Pastor gave us a wonderful story that has stayed with me 35 years!!   It has helped me stop and pray through many a “flat wheel moments” or when I can’t seem to hear My Shepherd’s Voice.  It has helped me part the veil of confusion reigning in my heart and see with clarity the spiritual battle that is happening at those times. (Eph. 6:10-18)

I’d like to share that story with you, with the prayer that you too will be helped by its simplicity but great message.

Shepherd Or

There once was a small congregation in England who had a wonderful Pastor who guided and nurtured them. He taught them well from God’s word.  One day, as a congregation, they all decided to visit Israel.   While flying to their destination, their Pastor encouraged them to pay particular attention when they saw a Shepherd, with staff in hand and guiding his flock; how the sheep would docilely follow him here and there – bleating softly – happily following him wherever he would lead. This, of course, is an example of how our personal walk should be with our  Shepherd.

One day, outside a small village, they saw a man with his sheep.   However,  the sheep were stressed, frantic in behavior, running here and there,  panting and scurrying as he drove them from behind, prodding unkindly with his staff. 

 The little congregation was confused!   They went to their pastor and said… “We thought you said the sheep were calm and happy and willingly followed their Shepherd!?  Why was he behind them? Why were they frantic and stressed?”    The Pastor was just as perplexed, so he asked their guide for clarification,  as this was contrary to all he had read of how shepherd’s herded their flocks. 

The Pastor approached the guide and posed the question: “Why, after all we have learned and been taught about shepherding here in Israel, is the flock of sheep so harried and discontented when interacting with their shepherd?”

Without miss a beat, the guide replied: “Oh, that’s NOT the Shepherd… That is the BUTCHER!”  

(1. Peter 5:8) 

Beloved sisters in Christ, when you are feeling harried, stressed, frantic, depressed, anxious, fearful, undone, scattered, or unsure which direction to go: ask yourself this question… Am I following the Shepherd who leads me OR…  Am I being driven forward by The Butcher?!

I pray this little sermonette stays with you for years to come too.  Be blessed, know His voice, and stay close to THE SHEPHERD.

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Dear, sweet readers– take a quick peek at your heart today… Are you being driven forward by the Shepherd or the Butcher? Join the conversation and leave a comment.

Sammie headshotSuzanne (Sammie) Gray has been a Bible Study leader with PWOC,  International  Women’s Club, and  Campus Crusade for Christ ministries for over 42 years.   Her passion is teaching women how to walk in victory in their knowledge of our Jesus Christ.  Her hearts calling and personal ministry Scripture is Is. 61; 1-3 helping women to discover Christ’s Divine Design and calling on their lives.

She has two children, three grandchildren, and one great-grandchild.  She spent 15 years in the Corporate  world,  has owned/operated three  businesses, and traveled the world extensively.  Her hobbies are gardening, music, and studying Paleo-Biblical Hebrew interpretation of Scripture.  

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Linking up today with my friend Kristin over at Three-word Wednesday and having a little Coffee for your Heart with Holley.  

 

7 Days Time

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A Comedic Comparison: Deployment Beginning Vs. End

Deployments are a funny thing.

They are (of course) very much a challenging part of this army wife life, and they are always full of surprises. As I type this, sitting in the Fort Lewis Starbucks, we are in the homestretch of our latest deployment. (Yes. We see the humorous signs that homecoming is coming!)

Hopefully by the time this post publishes, my Beloved Husband and I will be back in the same zip code. (Pending broken planes, incorrect scheduling, etc.) [Read more…]

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Faith is a Gift #WilcoWednesday

Welcome to Wilco Wednesday! If you are a new around these parts, “Wilco” is Army-speak for “Will Comply.” Think of it as saying “Roger, God. Got it. Will do.”  So that is what Wednesday here at 7 Days Time is all about– exploring his decrees and seeking guidance for what complying with Him looks like in everyday life. The best part? He loves us for who we are, not what we do.  Remember: He doesn’t want perfection, just obedience. Share. Enjoy. Interact. And let’s respond to God’s call with  a hearty “Wilco, Lord!” Please help me welcome my friend Amy to the blogging “stage!” 

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“Faith is a gift from God.  It is our duty to accept it.”  –MNSGR Gerald Ward

Many years ago, my husband and I attended a marriage retreat when we were stationed at Fort Campbell, KY.  I couldn’t have been more excited.  A weekend away in Nashville at the Opryland hotel!  All expenses paid!  Just us!  My mom had even flown in to watch our 20-month-old.  Fresh from his first deployment, the husband and I were more than ready to delve into our marriage through some bible study and companionship with other military couples.  I even remember pulling out my “formal shoes” and my go-to little black dress in the hopes of a fancy dinner.  This. Was. Serious. [Read more…]

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Faith: Do I have enough? #WilcoWednesday

Welcome to Wilco Wednesday! If you are a new around these parts, “Wilco” is Army-speak for “Will Comply.” Think of it as saying “Roger, God. Got it. Will do.”  So that is what Wednesday here at 7 Days Time is all about– exploring his decrees and seeking guidance for what complying with Him looks like in everyday life. The best part? He loves us for who we are, not what we do.  Remember: He doesn’t want perfection, just obedience. Share. Enjoy. Interact. And let’s respond to God’s call with  a hearty “Wilco, Lord!”  Welcome today my wise and loving friend, Katharina as she shares her heart with us. 

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Have you ever wondered how some people have faith that can move a mountain? I have! It seems to me that my faith is overshadowed more with doubt than anything else.

I would like to introduce to you George Müller (1805-1898). He opened up his heart and house to serve the orphans in Bristol, England. He and his wife started their ministry in their house with a Breakfast Club that began with 30 orphans, eventually growing to five large houses, which ultimately served over ten thousand children (Benge, J. & H., 1999, George Müller, The Guardian of Bristol’s Orphans). [Read more…]

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God’s Principle of Because

 

Today I am so privileged to introduce you to one of my (new) dear friends and kind-of-partner-ish-boss from Army Wife Network, Crystal Niehoff. She is AWN’s Owner and “Commander” (and I am blessed to be her Editor-In-Chief and Deputy Commander.) Crystal has a lot of great things to share– and this post is one of them!

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It is perfectly normal to question “why” when we are in the midst of trials and adversities. Why is God allowing me to suffer? Why doesn’t the Lord heal this illness? Why can’t we get ahead financially? Why is my family facing all these difficulties?

These past few years (due to some tragic events that have occurred in my family) I have searched God’s Word, seeking answers as to why we have to go through such grief and difficulties in this life. I would be lying to you if I told you I figured out the answers to all these questions. Truth is, there are just some things we will not know, or fully comprehend, this side of heaven.  For whatever reason, trials are a part of life, and in John 16:33, Jesus acknowledges that “in this life we will have trouble.”  Christ then gives us the assurance that He has overcome this world.  One day, for those who believe, we will be in glory and there will be no more tears (Revelation 21:4). [Read more…]

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