Thursday, January 26, 2012

Self-Absorbed, Self-Centered and Selfish People

Wow!If there is one thing, one person, that really gets under my skin it's a self-absorbed, self-centered and selfish person. A person whom only thinks of themself. A person so full of themself that they don't care how they act around others or how they talk to others.

Self means a person's character, their nature, personl interest. Self-Absorbed people are people that are draining to the other people in their life and to those that are around them. Self-centered is someone that is engrossed in their ownself and their own affairs. All three describe a person who only thinks of themselves. This person also constantly reminds others about "their" good qualities and "your" bad qualities! Yeah, they do things primarily for themselves. Did I hit a bone? Do you know anyone like that? Are you like that?

First of all, if you are a self-absorbed, self-centered and selfish person I'm praying for you. And if you know of someone like this, than I want to suggest that you pray for them. We are to put others before ourselves. We are to exemplify J-O-Y!

A person that is so caught up in themself cannot be living a life that exudes Christ and exudes Christ in all that they do. This brings me to my life verse: 2 Corinthians 2:14-16, "But thanks be to God, who always leads us in triumphal procession in Christ and through us spreads everywhere the fragrance of the knowledge of him. For we are to God the aroma of Christ among those who are being saved and those who are perishing.To the one we are the smell of death; to the other, the fragrance of life. And who is equal to such a task?" Our job on Earth is to spread and share the Gospel of Christ. I don't know about you, but how can you do that if you are a self-absorbed, self-centered and selfish person? I have a big heart and I find that most of my life I have given, it's natural for me to give. I would rather give than recieve, the same is for the Major, maybe the Lord saw this in him and that's why he called him to go into the Ministry.

How do we feel when we are around these types of people that only see "themself" in the world? I feel sorry for the person and then at the same time, I feel embarrassed. How can someone not notice they are so wrapped up in themself? I just feel sorry and embarrassed for them! Then I lift up a prayer that God would open up their eyes and clear the clutter in their heads!

Does this mean that we are never self-absorbed, self-centered or selfish, of course not! We all have alittle of the three of these in us, but it's our choice wether we want to unleash them and if we want to reap what we sow!
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Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Actions Speak Louder Than Words

How many times have you heard this? Or how many times have you said this? Maybe you can say yes to both questions, I know I can! The phrase to me is true, actions do speak louder than words and this particularly makes me frustrated when someone tellls you they are going to do something and they never do! Don't tell someone you're going to do something if you're not going to follow through with your WORDS. Because ACTIONS do speak louder than words.

What is really frustrating is when kids, especially my kids are involved. It's best not to tell a kid that you are going to do something unless you really are going to do it! Don't say that you're going to go to a School Program, Band Concert, Foot Game, Wrestling Match or other activity or event if you're really not going to take action! How would you feel if someone told you they were going to do something and they didn't follow through? I know that it really frustrates me when people do it to me and it especially frustrates me when it happens to kids.

Basically when people do not follow through with actions on words that they say, they are basically say that they care more about themselves than others. We are to live a live of JOY, we are to put Jesus first, Others second and Yourself last!

So think about it, where would we be if Christ would not have put us first? Next time you open your mouth and say that you're going to do something think about it and make sure that you are going to follow through with what you say because you can save a lot of heart ache and hurt.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Wrestling a Fall, Another Episode and Mom is Down:Not a Normal Week at The Cottage

This week at the Cottage has been far from normal, if there is such a thing as normal! I have found myself repeating Psalms 34:1 lots of times this past week. This is a verse in which I leaned and clinged to many many years ago when I struggled with anxiety and stress. "I will bless the Lord at all times; His praise shall continually be in my mouth." This held true this week as our week unfolded starting on Tuesday....

Tuesday started with the kids going to school and Mom going to the Doctor for a follow-up about my severe allergic reactions that I have been having. If I haven't mentioned it before, blood testing(I had 11viles of blood taken) showed that I am severely allergic to TURKEY and I am also severely allergic to CARAMEL COLOR. Yep, this came as a shock to me! Do you know what all has caramel coloring in it!!! Yogurt, ham, beef broth, most soft drinks, just to name a few! So, what is a girl to do!?! I have to read the labels on everything! But I must admit that I have been looking at the labels so much lately that it is now second nature! So my appointment turned into more than just a follow-up. I showed my Doctor a place on my left leg that was red and very tender to touch and she immediately said that I had a severe bacterial infection, yep, she said that if I get a fever or it gets worse that she will have to put me in the Hospital on intravenous antibiotics, but for now she said that she will put me on a very strong oral antibiotic and to come back next week and if it's still the same she will admit me!! Ummm, this can't happen, the Major is deployed and I have two teens to take care of!! Praying that it gets better because this Mom doesn't have time for the Hospital!!

Our Tuesday wasn't over yet....the Bookworm came home from wrestling practice and what appeared on him....the cuts from a terrible fall from running where the pavement definately won! So we have been nursing two really scraped and cut knees, one palm with a deep wound, the other hand with knuckles all cut and one left shoulder that is really really cut and messed up down to the meat! Yep, the Bookworm has been wrestling a fall, and how did it happen....they were running for wrestling practice and a team mate that was running behind him stepped on something that went in his foot and it made him fall into the back of the Bookworm making him fall on the pavement! Ouch!! Praising God that with our doctoring it is getting better everyday.

Tuesday also held a wrestling match, as well as Wednesday night. Thursday was a nice day because we all three got to sleep in a little longer than usual. The Bookworm had Wrestling practice and the Princess had an appointment with her Cardiologist, an appointment that we were ready to go to because of the episodes that the Princess had been having. Her appointment turned out well, her heart is healthy and well! So this confirms that she suffers from atypical migraines which can cause all of the symptoms that she has at least once a month which are nausea, headache, paleness and temporary loss of sight. After her appointment we had errands to run and a casual wear outfit to buy for her School Pagent that she is going to be in. What better place to shop than Belk right? So we're in Belk and we finally found something that she liked, we are getting ready to walk out of the dressing room and she says that she doesn't feel well, that she feels sick and her head was starting to hurt. She knew that she was starting to have an episode, we both knew what was next, she would feel real light headed  and have a temporary loss of sight. Needless to say, it happened, there we were in Belk and I had to literally drag/tote my daughter out of the store! Once out the store doors to the outside the cool air hit her and she didn't feel hot anymore, but she was very cool to the touch and very pale. I sat her down on the curb with her nearly falling back on her head, finally she was able to sit up and put her head between her knees. I ran to get the van and put her in and high tailed it home! Once we got home she immediately got in the bed to sleep it off. After a few hours she woke up and was very exhausted and fatigued from the episode. Next week there will be another visit to her Doctor to change her medication because the preventative that she is on isn't preventing anything! I had never been in such a state of shakiness and scared and nervousness in all my life, I felt helpless!

Thursday night, although it was one in the morning for the Major, he skyped me and it was the first time that I broke down crying. Sometimes you can't help but show how you feel on the inside. His words of comfort and encouragement helped. Almost two months gone of this deployment and 7 more to go!

Moral to my quite interesting and unusual week here at the Cottage: Military wives usually go with the flow, don't ever spend the extra time or energy wondering what:when:where or how: they just do it, they're use to being alone for months on end, that no matter how hard it is they keep going because they have to and they keep the Faith, they learn not to sweat the small stuff, to be a listener:an encourager and remind theirself that they are strong, and they pray pray pray!

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

In Our Home

Stayce Inabinet Kleinholz

Funny to think that many of the sayings mentioned on the above picture are practiced in many homes. How sad. What would life be like without second chances, thank yous, realness, sorrys, love, mistakes, respect, happiness, dreams, faith and family.

When you start talking about homes, there are so many different types of homes to talk about. Not everyone grew up in the same kind of home environment. This is true. Lots of times we notice this when we marry. I know that is true for the Major and I. His upbringing and mine were not the same, in fact they were total opposites. Together, we have come together and we have a foundation set for our own home and family.

I was born in SC in the 70's and reared in a home where my Father worked and my Mom stayed at home. It was nice having a Mom that was at home. She was there with us to get us up in the mornings and take us to school, she was there to pick us up from school. She helped with homework and took my brother and I to our extra-curricular activites, and she had dinner ready and we were ready to eat when my Dad got home from work. I grew up drinking sweet tea, and most everything was fried!

I grew up in the country where my brother and I went to a country elementary school where everyone knew everybody and our middle and high schools were considered in the city because of the distance we drove to get there. We would enjoy swimming in the pool during the summer time, riding our go carts and four-wheelers. We would hunt and go barefoot. We even, at one time, each had rabbits, and goats and ducks! It was a fun childhood. We were also very fortunate to have both sets of our Grandparents living within minutes of us and even my Aunts and Uncles and Cousins. Family vacations were to the beach or mountains or Disney World, and my Granny would most always travel with us.

I went to a Southern Baptist Church, in fact, I went to the same Church my whole life and I accepted Christ as my Savior and became a Christian when I was 10 years old. It was a rural country Church, but it was full of some of the most loving and wonderful believers that I have ever known. Many are gone now and they are in Heaven, and I will never forget them and the impact that they each had on my life. This is the Church were I grew up, this is the Church where I was Baptised, and this was the Church that I said good-bye to when the Major and I married over 17 years ago.

I grew up with one sibling, a brother whom is 3 1/2 years younger than I am. We are completely night and day. I have brown hair:he has red, he is tall:I am average height, he never had to study:I always had to, I have kids:he doesn't. It was fun growing up with a little brother and it was fun to dress him up too with make up and heels! We had lots of fun times swimming, riding bikes, go-carts, four-wheeling, hunting, playing video games. No, we were not always nice to eachother, we were like all other siblings, there were times where we would argue and tease eachother. One of those times ended with me getting a broken arm!

I grew up in a home where my parents married young, and had me when they were only 19 and 17 years old. They had known eachother for every and fell very much in love and still are, and have been married for 37 years. My parents have gone through many seasons in their life. There are no kids at home as my brother and I are both married. My parents still live in the same home and city in which I grew up in and which I never moved or left until I married. My brother is married to my sweet wonderful sister-in-law and they recently moved to Georgia after living in Illinois for the past five years. It is so nice having them a few hours away now. The Major and I have been stationed in SC going on four years now and it is very nice being close to my family and it's especially nice that our Princess and Bookworm have their Grandparents(my parents) only alittle over an hour down the road.

The Major was also born in the 70's, but he came from a Military family and lived lots of places as he was growing up. He has lived from the East Coast to the West Coast and like me was born on the East Coast, even though he was born in Rhode Island and is a notherner(yankee)! But I will say that he is far from a northerner, he is very much southern. Unlike me, the Major was educated in private Catholic Schools, although I will add that I did go to a private school during second grade, until he moved to SC and was in a public High School.

He was raised Catholic, had a Dad and Mom whom both worked and he lived in the city. Unlike me being the oldest, the Major is the youngest. He has two siblings, a sister whom is the oldest and a brother who is the middle child. There is a 3 year age gap between each of them. His siblings are married and now have children of their own just like us and they all reside in the same state close to where the Major's parents live. The Major wasn't only the baby in the family, but also the last one to marry and last one to "leave the nest".

Although the Major was raised in the Catholic church, he never accepted Christ until was 17 years old, but never fully understood the feeling and understanding of being a Christian until months after we were married, where he fully gave himself to Christ and was baptized. Every since that day he has given himself completely to Christ and is a God strong and a man of faith. Funny how God called a boy who grew up Catholic to be His servant and go into the Ministry...The Major continues to work on his Master of Divinity at Liberty University. I know God has great plans in store for the Major. Who knows, maybe we'll end up starting a Church or being Missionaires!

The Major and I met our Junior year of High School. We were both in the Band and we knew eachother, but we didn't really know eachother. It was on a Band trip that we started talking and we got to know eachother better. After the trip we started dating(dating almost 2 years) and we have been together ever since. We gradutated from High School, we were engaged the year we graduated, I went to College while the Major went in the Army and then we were married after he completed AIT. Our wedding day was on the Thanksgiving long weekend because we knew that the Major would have a four day and would be able to come to his own wedding :)

We were young when we married, we were both 19 years old. We were criticized by some because they thought that we were too young. We were in love and knew that we wanted to be together, the Major had a great job in the US ARMY and we knew that we wanted to be with eachother for the rest of our lives. We didn't care what the "few" people thought about us or our age. All I can think or say about it is, look at us now! Happily married with two children and we've been married for almost 18 years! Alot longer than some people and other people our age!

We had a most lovely and beautiful wedding. My parents spared no expense. It was rainy the day of our wedding, which is said to be good luck, and was held in one of the biggest Churches in our city. We had a traditional wedding, and no, it was not in a Catholic church with a mass, etc. Neither of us wanted that( I wasn't Catholic and that wasn't us), so we were married in a Church that was neither mine nor the Major's. The Preacher that married us was one that had watched me grow from being a little girl into a woman, he was the one that baptized me and he was the one that I wanted to marry us. The Major met him on several occasions before we were married and he agreed, he thought that he was very nice and had a fun personality. My Dad walked me down the aisle and gave me away. And my Mom, words can't describe what kind of a Mom she is, she helped with everything that had to do with the wedding and made sure that everything was perfect! So on November 26, 1994, the Major and I were married and we began our life together.

I'll never forget when the Major found out where his first duty assignment was going to be in the Army. I asked him where and he said Fort Rucker. I thought that sounded like a cool place, at least it had a neat name. Then I asked him where that was, and he said Alabama! For this country girl that had never moved before I thought that we would be getting stationed somewhere out of the south, so I was a little disappointed with Alabama. Yet, we loved the years that we spent in Alabama, it was a wonderful first assingment, still close enough to SC to go and visit family. It was where we had our first house and where we started our family. It was where the Princess was born. Now it's almost 18 years later, 13 moves, 8 duty stations, 3 deployments and two teenagers in the Cottage, and we're in the best season of our life!

We have a home where the Major is the head of the household, where God is our foundation, where our faith and trust are in God and God alone. A home where we give second chances, where we say thank you, where we're real and not fake(you either like us and love us or you don't and leave us alone and we'll leave you alone too), where we say I'm sorry, a home where there is much laughter and love, a home where we all make mistakes becauae we are not perfect, a home where respect is given, a home full of happiness, a home where it is okay to dream, a home that believes in faith and stands on it, and a home where we are family.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

My Year's Theme and Life Verse

At the end of each year I pray to God to reveal to me what He wants me to focus on for the coming new year. As we are going through a Deployment, I was very anxious to see just what God wants me to focus on. Our last Deployment God showed me the word "anxious". I use to be a very anxious person and during the last Deployment I prayed that God would take away all anxiousness in my life. God does hear us when we pray! I was apart of PWOC(Protestant Women of The Chapel) in Germany and the Bible study that we were starting when The Major deployed was.....Calm My Anxious Heart by Linda Dillow. God knew what I needed and He knew how to give it to me! By the time the Major redeployed, all anxiousness was gone! Thank you Lord! Those that knew me before we moved to Europe noticed the change when we moved back to The States six years after living in Europe. To this day when someone tells me that I am stressed or anxious it really bothers me because I know that I no longer get anxious or stressed, I simply say to the person, no, I think that you are :)

This year I heard not one but three words from the Lord. The Lord has given to me: GIVE, GO and NO. These are the words that I will focus on during this new year. I will give to what the Lord shows me to give to, be it time, money or self. I will go where the Lord wants me to go. And I will not be afraid to say no. No to things that I do not want to do, no to things that I may have said yes to before. I will not be anxious.

Many of my friends have life verses, I too have one. If you do not have a life verse I encourage you to find one. Read your Bible and pray to the Lord to show you a verse that He wants you to focus on, a scripture for you to meditate and dwell on, a scripture that will inspire you, challenge you, and remind you to live your life day to day for Christ because we were put here on this Earth to be a witness for Him and to share and spread His Word.

My life verse: 2 Corinthians 2:14&15"But thanks be to God, who always leads us in triumphal procession in Christ and through us spreads everywhere the fragrance of the knowledge of him. For we are to God the aroma of Christ among those who are being saved and those who are perishing."

Blessings to you in the New Year, challenge yourself to pray and ask God what He wants you to reveal and meditate on in your life this year!