Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Sometimes persistence pays off...

Here are a couple of pictures of the goodies I am packing up for the RAK give away I did along with most of the other SIS Fashionistas yesterday. We are all having a blast getting to 'know' each other and we're even 'laughing online' and just having fun. If you haven't already, you're still welcome to come on by the website, look around, and register and join the fun that the rest of us are having. You can take a peek at a few recent layouts I've scrapped too. Then go look at some of the other layouts in the gallery for even more inspiration...there are so many talented people in there...makes me feel *shy* about my own work!
Now, on to the topic of this post- persistence. I went round and round with how to pick the winner for this little RAK. Not that it's earth shattering or anything...but I was looking for a number to fall from the sky...that kind of thing. Well, it didn't happen. BUT, I was thinking about how sometimes in life, at least for me, I sometimes miss out on stuff simply because I don't ask.
In my case, I am thinking mostly in terms with my relationship with God, and they way He likes that relationship to be a constant thing...and He loves when I reflect and pray. Pray about anything, because: 1)It reminds me that He is the source of all I have and need in life, 2)Prayer reminds me that God is always with me and I can turn to Him no matter the day or the hour, 3)It is a way to grow my relationship with Him, as communing with someone helps you to 'know' them better.
Prayer is a very important part of my life...and yet sometimes (especially in years past) I miss so many opportunities to ask God for direction, for specific needs, for His will, or even to tell Him how much I love Him in my life. Not long ago I was getting frustrated with my printer and was clicking around trying to figure out why my document wouldn't print. Everything looked good- the power was on, the ink levels were full, the paper was loaded, the proper driver was selected on my screen- yet nothing was happening. After several attempts at printing I had a lightbulb moment, and so I grabbed the USB cord and followed it...and found that it wasn't connected to my computer. DUH!
What a perfect illustration of our lives sometimes, huh?! We sit there full of possibilities and opportunities and ideas and often we have good intentions with what we want to do with our time and talent and energy...we're just ready to do something with ourselves, and yet for some reason, things don't go the way we want. Sometimes the harder we 'try' the more frustrated we become...the job we want just doesn't pan out, the attempts at getting pregnant and having a family fail time and again, the debt piles up on the credit cards, the relationship or marriage we dreamed of just doesn't fulfill our lives as we had dreamed...'stuff' just doesn't happen!
But I wonder, how much of that would change or feel different if we just 'connected to the Source'? God is like the USB cord that I had to have plugged in correctly in order to get my document to print. He wants to bless us and fulfill our deepest longings and see us do great things with our lives...and see us do small things too- as long as we are connected to Him as our source. And if we find that through prayer and persistence of seeking His heart that the things we want still don't come to pass, I have found He changes the 'desires of my heart' to become one with His plans.
I don't believe that simply praying constantly to get things will bring them to fruitition in our lives, like me wanting Teagan back after she died. I prayed and prayed that God would turn back time and change the way things happened- I wanted Him to give her back to me, and I believed He could. But then at some point, instead of asking God to give me Teagan back, I began to pray that He would give me joy in place of my sorrow, and that He would give me peace where all I felt was longing and pain.
And you know what? I didn't get Teagan back- even though God could have done that- but I did get more and more peace and joy to the point where I know God is very real in my life, and He has answered the cry of my heart. I simply had to get connected to Him and ask Him to meet my deepest needs.
These thoughts actually tie in with how I picked the RAK winner out of 213 comments. I was just about to post with a random number selection, when I clicked on and read the most recent comments (14 at the time...thanks for all the 'glowing' comments, and incidentally, I got that pink dress at Yonkers.) from yesterday's post. One of those comments was someone who had hoped to win the RAK and was one of the 213 comments. It struck me that Jackie in Chicago came back, and left a second comment, mentioning that she hoped she'd win the prize. So, I scrapped (no pun intended!) my plans for the random pick, and chose her {yes, Jackie! you win!} for the giveaway...because she came back and 'asked' for it. It's a little reminder to me (and maybe to some of you), that sometimes in life we get something just because we ask for it. I forget that, or talk myself out of asking- for a variety of reasons. But I hope to never forget to come to stay connected to my 'Powersource' and then just step back and see what happens when I humble myself and pray. It's so basic, so simple...ask and you shall receive. This time it worked in Jackie's favor. Congrats to you. I loved that you got your "love of learning" from your Mom too. I was amazed while reading through the responses, how much a Mom influences our lives in so many ways! Both good and bad too...yikes to me!
Those comments have helped me want to really be cautious and intentional even more than I am already, about what I say and do in front of my kids, as to remember that they are watching and soaking up so much of how I live and respond to life. I hope that the best I have to offer is what they take away from me...and that they forgive me for my shortcomings and learn from my mistakes. I'm happy to see that even those who didn't have the best relationship with their moms were still able to glean something from that, or to turn around and do things differently than her and become a better person for it. That's a beautiful thing. I just did my "KelliCrowe knock-off" layout about my mom and how I am like her in so many ways. I am proud of that...and hope that she knows how much I appreciate the example she has been in my life. That picture of Ava is just thrown in for good measure here. I am persistent at getting a clear, smiling picture of her. One of these days my efforts are gonna pay off. I just know it! =)
Oh yeah! The prize package; you can click the photos to see the goodies close up. They include patterned papers from My Mind's Eye, Me and My Big Ideas rub-ons, Heidi Swapp flowers, ribbon, colored clips, a couple of Nitty.Gritty. golf tees (my favorite scrap tool!!), some Dove truffles (I keep a jar of them in my scrap room for 'inspiration'), a Tazo Passion tea bag (which I LOVE hot or cold!), some fabric swatches from the apron I just made, and some puffy heart stickers. Email me your address, Jackie...and this stuff will be on it's way to Chicago. I love Chicago too!


Sheri said...

Congrats Jackie!! And thanks for your comments, Jody about asking. We just had that discussion in our small group Sunday night. God DOES want to give us what we ask for. (We're just not always asking for the right things!)

Have a great day,


~Lea~ said...

What a fun and colorful RAK! Congrats Jackie....what fun it will be to scrap with it!

BTW- love your KC lift layout. Your layouts are always so sweet and whimsical to me....I love it!

Hope you have a good day, and be looking for an email from me. ;)


Amy W. said...

great entry, congrats Jackie! :>

Robin said...

Yeah Jackie! Have must share what you do with your goodies!!

Christa said...

You have no idea how much I needed to read your blog today. God is so important and last night I wondered where He was, and He just showed himself to me through your blog. I found my 'disconnected' usb cable and am plugging it back in right now!

elizbailey said...

Thank you for your thoughts today. Much needed reading. I think that is great how you picked your RAK.

Claire said...

Hey Jody

Those commenters totally had a good call on the pink dress thing - it's gorgeous!

Just shows how my attention to detail is fading... I was focusing on the faces in the photos (and the military uniform too I guess).

And Congrats on the Ava photo - you're definitely moving in the right direction!


Jackie from Chicago said...

yay me! lol, thanks Jody! It is actually kinda cool, since it was on your blog that I found out about SIS, I've actually been a reader for a lil while and love to hear about your fam and your scrapbooking! You are a great mom, as far as I can read :) to 5 beautiful kiddies! Thanks again, I am so emailing you rite now!!

Jackie from Chicago said...

O and thanks to everyone for the congrats, ooo so exciting...I will try and do the awesome RAK justice and do something awesome with it, and show it, I gotta call my mom, lol!

FlipFlop Mom said...

Congrats Jackie... I don't know what your first post was... But I hope you have fun making new pages!!!! YAY for you!!!

And Jodi.. I got goosebumps reading your post today.. and almost cried.. don't know why?? Just did... :( Maybe the Holy Spirit...??? *Ü*

Kairlotta said...

Great post today Jody! I am glad to be back online after a week of moving to a new home and no accessible internet. I am so sad I missed out on the RAK too! I missed reading your inspiring posts! Congrats Jackie!

Cris said...

Congratulations Jackie!!!

patterns of ink said...

Did I hear Chip on the radio this morning? Driving into work, I thought I heard Chip's voice on 100.5. They were talking with a pilot about a patriotic fund raising event at Chip's Golf Club (I don't mean to imply that he owns the GHGC =)
Anyway, if that was him. Tell him I heard him.

Jody said...

Yes, POI...that was Chip. =)