Friday, November 28, 2014

5 Exquisitely Random Late November Musings



1.  Just because you've sold millions of books and spent forever on the New York Times Bestseller list, doesn't mean you don't have a tender heart.  When I shared One Urgent Question You Must Ask Yourself Before the Holiday Season with Ann Voskamp and her readers, she took the time to respond in the loveliest, most affirming way.  Her post, How to Make a Plan So That Nothing Makes You Feel Worthless This Time of Year ... and those kind words, are here
 
And is it ok to let you know that when she penned, 'what a needful, helpful ministry you have, Linda - you just blessed my socks off today!' ... well it just made me smile.  Big.
 
 
2.  You don't need some church or board or committee or organization's permission to roll up your sleeves, get out there, and give someone a helping hand.  Too often we waste valuable time and energy cooling our heels and waiting for someone else's seal of approval, instead of just taking care of what so obviously needs to be done.
 
The best gift to offer someone in need ... any season of the year?  The gift of compassionate, judgement-free relationship.  Quiet, faithful presence.  And a bit of sweat equity.  Without making a major deal about it.
 
 
3.  Sometimes you just need to find yourself a quiet, dark corner and make a plan to have a good cry.  Especially at this time of year where winsome joy / deepest grief / broken expectations / sheer relief / unspoken loneliness / just plain exhaustion collide.  Other times your flow of tears will simply erupt on a moment's notice and spill out and over on to all who gather round.  Don't be alarmed if you're the cry-er ... or the compassionate one who keeps company with such. 

There's a reason He saves our tears in a bottle {Psalm 56:8}.  And some sweet day I'm going to ask Him why He took the trouble to show such tender love in such a bittersweet way.  Meanwhile, don't pass the tissues.  {It's a subtle way of telling someone that their tears make you uncomfortable.}  Simply have a box or two on hand for us weepers to grab hold of.
 
 
4.  My husband and I decided that if we were going to make our Thanksgiving as stress free as possible, we'd roast the big ol' bird the day before, slice it up, and cover it with chicken broth, and gently reheat it the next day. 

video

My father got a bit of a horrified look on his face when I told him our plans. 
 
The verdict?

 
I'd say my sister's China / Massachusetts / Macedonia / Pennsylvania tribe thought it wasn't all that bad!


5.  There are few presents lovelier than a gift card, crisp and hard and rectangular, a perfect addition to that little space in your wallet that's already crammed with receipts, store loyalty cards, and other random gift cards with all of $1.78 left on them. 
 
But this?  Pure genius.

 
Grab your Holiday Gift Exemption gift certificate here.
 
Comfort & Joy, my friend ~
 
 


 
 
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randomly sharing with lovely party hostesses
Emily  *  Leigh  *  Holley  *  Kristen  *  Laura  *  Anita

30 comments:

  1. I just want you to know---YOU GET IT!!! Good for you!
    When my tear dam finally burst after many long years of holding it back, they flow at the slightest provocation now--happy and sad!
    Glad your day was great! Now to enjoy the remainder of your weekend!
    Blessings!

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    1. Oh yeah, not to worry. I get it, Lulu! Just 'cause you've got a bunch of letters after your name doesn't mean you're immune to that whole rainbow of emotions!

      ;-}

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  2. One are cool list of things you're thankful for! I love it when 'famous' people turn out to be 'real' people with kind hearts :). I love the 'One Less Gift' certificate idea, too! Thank you for all of the encouragement you give other people!

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    1. For sure, there's just SO MUCH to be grateful for! Ann wasn't kidding when she talks about 1000 gifts. God's love toward us is so incredibly lavish ...

      Sabbath blessings to you, Anita!

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  3. Love hearing how Ann Voskamp responded to you! How encouraging.

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    1. Her sweet surprise came just the week I needed it most. That's how He does it! Gotta love His timing!

      Praising Him for encouraging words like yours, Leigh.

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  4. #5 is awesome! There is nothing more I'd like to receive this year than a one less gift certificate. Unfortunately most of the people in my life love gift giving, even if it just means another donation trip to the thrift store for me because I have more stuff than I need. Maybe I'll work up the nerve to give a certificate to one of my loved ones, though I'm not sure they'd appreciate it :-(

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    1. I love that you're identifying what you really want, my friend! Sometimes we just need to let others know what would best meet our needs. If they guess, their idea of a wonderful gift could be a real bomb for us.

      Praying you'll be courageous and be able to say, 'This year I would love it if ...'

      ;-}

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  5. You bless my socks off too Linda ;) I love that she said that!
    Your one less gift idea is great. I try to tell my mother in law not to get us much, but it falls on deaf ears. Maybe I should show her this!

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    1. ;-}

      It'd be fun to see how she'd respond if you told her what you WOULD appreciate rather than what you don't want! And then ask her what she would really love for you to give her. Just might surprise you all!

      Keep me posted, Sarah!

      ;-}

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  6. Oh sweet friend, I just love you. You have such a beautiful heart. It's always such a joy to come here. Thank you for being YOU. Much love. xoxo

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    1. Your visits always make me smile. Always! I only wish they could be in person, Beth.

      I know your Thanksgiving was bittersweet with your son off serving our country ... and yet your husband was finally home to share a holiday with you. Saying 'thank you' to them, to you, for their service seems a bit insignificant, but I type these words from the bottom of my heart ...

      Sabbath rest and peace, my friend.

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  7. I really like the one less gift certificate idea! We stopped exchanging presents with siblings years ago and it's wonderful!

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    1. Kind of takes the pressure off, huh? And releases us simply to enjoy each other's company. I like it, Steph!

      Thanks for sharing with us ...

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  8. Hi Linda! Thank you for sharing your wonderful experience with Ann Voskamp. That she realizes what a prize you are only makes me see how wise she truly is.
    Good for you for making the holiday less stressful for yourself, and making your guests happy too!
    On to the bright season of Advent. How I love this time of year...'turn back to me with all your heart'. Yes, that's what I want to do.
    Sunday blessings my friend,
    Ceil

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    1. I'm so grateful you're in my corner, friend! Your encouraging words always touch me somewhere deep. Thanks for finishing up this very special holiday weekend here with me!

      Celebrating Advent's first Sunday with you ...

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  9. One less gift! What a great idea. And I especially like your suggestion (permission, even?) to find a corner and cry. It can do the soul a lot of good!

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    1. Thanks for welcoming December with us here, Emily!

      ;-}

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  10. One less gift - I love it! Awesome idea!

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    1. I bet this idea is looking better and better with each passing day as our gift list seems to grow by leaps and bounds! Thanks for sharing a few moments here, Carol! Sure beats wading through the mall, yes?

      ;-}

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  11. Thank you for sharing your musings! Soooooooooo good.

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    1. And it's sooo good to have you hanging out here with us, Loralee!

      ;-}

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  12. I'm soaking in your words right now! I can concur that Ann Voskamp is so real-she has blessed me with her personal words before too. And I must say that #3 above described me perfectly! How did you know??? Love you friend!

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    1. Yeah, the holidays bring tears for a huge myriad of reasons. Those spillovers that spring from heart to eyes are usually sending us an important message / invitation that begs to be understood and heeded.

      I'm a big respecter of teardrops ... my own and others!

      And it really is ok to go there!

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  13. Hello Linda, so nice to meet you! I love this list. So much. #1 is just plain exciting. What a sweet thing to savor. #2 is EXCELLENT advice, thank you! Taking it. All of this is great. Merry Christmas to you and yours! xoxo hugs from Oklahoma

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    1. You're the first person to wish me a Merry Christmas this year, Marie! And your sweet words simply made me smile!

      Welcome ... it's a joy to meet you tonight!

      Ho ho ho ...

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  14. i loved all your points. especially that last one. so glad Ann encouraged you! your thanksgiving sounded lovely!! :)

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    1. Yeah, I think we're all getting weary of getting and giving too much STUFF ... I love the idea of sharing a meaningful experience or some yummy food instead!

      Yum! Can you tell it's suppertime around here, Summer?

      ;-}

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  15. Linda, love your posts...especially the randomness...thanks for sharing the sweet comment from Ann Voskamp... truly, all is grace :)

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    1. mmm ... yep, so much of life is totally random. Except to Him, who numbers our days and knows the end from the beginning. What a peace that gives us. Thank You, Lord!

      Thanks for dropping in today, Beth ...

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Welcome to the table, friend!

This is where we gather and hang out. I'd love for you to pull up a chair and jump right into the conversation. Or simply say 'hello.'

l'll be dropping in to visit you sometime soon ...

Linda

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