Wednesday, September 14, 2022

😎🐫🎤 Christ’s peace and presence be with you.  First of all, I would like to thank you for your prayers during our wait time between installing the radiant floor heat system and the concrete being poured.  The rain that was forecasted for last Monday held off long enough for our foundation to be poured.  I hadn’t planned on taking the day off to be there for the concrete install, but a number of lastminute tasks had to be completed, so I shut down the laptop and put on some outside work clothes and headed to our homestead. 

One of my prayers over the past two years has been for the team of companies that God was lining up for our project.  This concrete team from MD Miller Inc was impressive to watch and their attention to detail was incredible.  In case you are wondering, owner Matt Miller and us are not related.  But something that we did discover during our pre-pour meeting is that Brian and Matt were in the same college class about 12 years ago and Matt purchased one of our trailers during our auction in 2012.  It absolutely amazes me, but doesn’t surprise me, how God weaves our lives together. 

It’s kind of like Mark Waters, the plumber we hired.  We had three plumbers lined up to do our project at different times, but for one reason or another, those connections fell through.  We’re going to put a two post car lift in our garage and one day as we were headed to the land, we passed a service station that had a couple lifts sitting in a side lot next to the business.  We stopped in to see if they were for sale.  The owner wasn’t in, but during a follow up conversation with the owner about installing a lift for us, the plumber topic came up.  He referred Brian to a good friend of his, Mark Waters, who is a plumber.  Waters, what a great name for a plumber.  Turns out he lives about 7 minutes away from our house and he has been a fabulous addition to our build team.  Very responsive and detail oriented.  He was also willing to adjust his schedule to fit our project timeline. 

Something that my Dad has said multiple times is that God will give us the house He wants for us.  To say it’s really cool to see it developing and playing out, just doesn’t seem to fully express the awesomeness of the situation.  God has a way of making me smile from within, that I just can’t help but smile on the outside.  I’m very much so looking forward to see Him in action as we continue our home build project.

Just in case you might want to see the progress, I included a few pictures of Concrete Day.

Bless others and be blessed.

Shelly  :0)

If the Lord has touched you in some way with His message today, I ask that you pay it forward by sharing this message, so that you and He may also bless others.  Click subscribe to receive your message every Wednesday.

#MDMillerInc – Concrete

#WatersPlumbing

Wednesday, September 7, 2022

😎🐫🎤 Christ’s peace and presence be with you.  Last Friday Brian and I were able to put the finishing touches on our radiant floor heat install and we did pass our pressure test.  Thank you God!  At this point we are continuing to pray for mild and calm weather so that everything stays intact as we await the foundation inspection and the house concrete which is scheduled for 09/12/2022, depending on the weather. 

Being that we had some unused materials from the floor heat install, Saturday morning we had three stops to make.  Brian was driving and he told me the order for the stops, which started with the furthest away, working our way back home.  Being different people as we are, my mind immediately thought, I would route it more like a loop, but decided not to say anything.  We completed our first stop and on the way to our second stop we saw a young girl by herself, close to a busy road.  I quickly looked down the cross street which led into a neighborhood, but did not see any adults.  There was a playground on the other side of that busy road and we were concerned she might be trying to go to the playground.  Brian turned around at the first road and we headed back to the little girl. 

By the time we got back, she had crossed one street and was a couple houses into the neighborhood, but we still couldn’t see any adults.  Brian stopped and I got out of the car to see if I could help her.  I introduced myself and she quietly said she was looking for her mom.  I asked her if she knew her house number.  No.  I asked her what her last name was.  She didn’t know.  I asked her what her mom’s name was.  Mom.  I asked her what her dad’s name was.  Dad.  So, I didn’t have much to go on.  I asked her if it would be okay if I walked with her to find her mom.  Yes.  I asked her what direction we should go and she silently pointed her finger.  We started walking as it started to lightly rain on us.  As we stopped at each corner, I asked her which way to go and she would point.  We continued to walk and navigate our way through the neighborhood as the rain came down a little harder.  Brian followed us in the car, keeping his distance so people didn’t think we were trying to kidnap this little girl.  As we walked, I continued to make small talk with her about siblings, her favorite colors, if she was in school, etc.  In the meantime, Brian called the police to assist with finding her parents.  I also told her that Brian called the police to help us.

Following her directions, we worked our way through the neighborhood to a dead-end road.  She started to look a little more concerned and worried, so we turned around to retrace our path.  We walked to the first intersection, but she wanted to turn around and go back to the dead-end, so we did.  Reaching the end of the road, we turned around to once again retrace our path.  As we were heading up a hill, the first police officer arrived.  We stopped and he was asking us some questions, but she hid behind me and didn’t want to answer.  A second police officer arrived.  She too was asking questions, by the little girl again hid behind me.  They had me take a picture of her and I told them I would continue walking with her as they started knocking on doors. 

We continued to walk and I asked her if anything looked like her home, but she said no.  She also told me that she needed to stay where her dad could see her.  We ended up completely retracing our path and she pointed me in a direction out of the neighborhood along that busy road.  We were just a little way down the road, as I was looking down at her and talking, I all of the sudden saw her face light up.  I looked up and quickly asked, “Is that your dad?”  YES!  I was so happy, but not near as happy as her and her dad. 

He explained that his wife had gone for a walk with one of their other children and he thought she was playing in another room, not knowing that she went out the garage door to go after her mom.  Apparently walking through that neighborhood was part of their normal walking route.  Me, the little girl and her dad headed back to the neighborhood to let the police know they were reunited.  At that time, he contacted his wife, who was already with the police officer.  She had called 911 also.  We did find out that this little girl was only 3 ½ years old.  We walked the neighborhood for close to an hour.  I can only imagine that was a very scary situation for her and I pray she doesn’t have any lasting trauma from that experience. 

As I was reflecting on this experience, it brought to mind how, even as adults, we can very easily get lost.  We travel down roads that seem familiar, yet they don’t lead us to were we need to be.  Even though we should stay were our Dad can see us, we tend to wonder off and loose sight of Him.  But the joy on her face when she saw her dad said it all.  That was the joy of coming home to a loving father.  I pray that you are able to experience such a pure, childlike joy when you see our Father coming closer, as He is seeking to find you. 

Bless others and be blessed.

Shelly  :0)

If the Lord has touched you in some way with His message today, I ask that you pay it forward by sharing this message, so that you and He may also bless others.  Click subscribe to receive your message every Wednesday.

#VerticalWorship – Shelter

Keep Moving Forward – Episode 54: My Shot at Vulnerability and Episode 56: How My Book Launch Day REALLY Went…

Christ’s peace and presence be with you.  Due to our recent home building adventures, I haven’t had as much free time to share Diana Marie Keller’s Keep Moving Forward episodes.  I guess that’s because I’ve been busy moving forward.  Instead of bombarding you with five episodes, I chose two to share with you today, but I strongly encourage you to click the Keep Moving Forward Podcast Link and listen to them all.  You just never know which one’s are going to hit home with you, until you listen. 

I chose to specifically share Episode 54 and 56 with you because we all are vulnerable and we all experience the ending of a journey and the different emotions those endings can bring.  Click the links below and listen for yourself. 

Friday, August 26, 2022

Keep Moving Forward – Diana Marie Keller

Episode 54: My Shot at Vulnerability

Check out the episode here: https://www.buzzsprout.com/1889846/11198765

Friday, September 2, 2022

Keep Moving Forward – Diana Marie Keller

Episode 56: How My Book Launch Day REALLY Went…

Check out the episode here: https://www.buzzsprout.com/1889846/11251250

#DianaMarieKeller – Keep Moving Forward

Blog Link

Podcast Link

If the Lord has touched you in some way with His message today, I ask that you pay if forward by sharing this message, so that you and He may also bless others.

Bless others and be blessed.

Shelly :0)

Wednesday, August 31, 2022

😎🐫🎤 Christ’s peace and presence be with you.  On Thanksgiving Day 2020 Brian and I found a two acre lot that we put an offer on and were supposed in closed by 12/31/2020.  Due to a title issue which took six months to clear up, we closed on our lot 06/25/2021.  Being that our home is a little out of the ordinary, it took three months to get our building plans approved.  On 06/06/2022 dirt was finally being moved.  YAY!!!!  The foundation has been set and now our first physical part of the house project has begun.  You see, Brian and I decided that we were going to install the radiant floor heat system.  We were a little naïve, thinking two of us could install a 90’ x 55’ radiant floor heat system in three days. God can accomplish a lot in three days, but we aren’t quite up to his level.  After five days and with my dad’s help…we have about ¾ the work completed.  I haven’t done this much physical labor in consecutive days since we closed our lawn care and landscaping business in 2011. 

Yes, it’s hard labor.  My muscles hurt.  I have bruises.  My lips, face, arms, legs have sun burn…from the ground up.  Seriously, I expected the hurting muscles and bruises, but not the sun burn.  Believe it or not, I’ve been wearing a large brimmed hat, long sleeve shirt, and pants in 90 degree weather, but working with and on white Styrofoam insulation boards, the sun light reflects off the insulation boards and gave me a sun burn. 

I’ve included some pictures of what we’ve been working on, so you can have a visual.  We put the plastic vapor barrier down on top of the gravel pad, laid the insulation board, set up the manifold station, run the Pex tubing, and top it all off with wire mesh and zip tie the mesh to rebar.  Once we complete this process, it then needs to be inspected and a pressure test complete to ensure there are no leaks in close to 5,400’ of Pex tubing.  After that inspection, then a foundation inspection has to be completed.  If all goes well, in about a week and a half, this system will be encased in concrete.

One of our concerns during this install process is our material not blowing away each night when we leave the job site, so we have to do our best to secure everything we install.  Brian and I would greatly appreciate your prayers for calm winds and mild weather during this time of finishing up the install and as we wait for the concrete to be poured. 

In times like these, we want to be the ones in control, calling the shots, and making life go the way we want it.  Although we have a hand in how things can progress, ultimately it will all come together in God’s perfect timing. 

Bless others and be blessed.

Shelly  :0)

If the Lord has touched you in some way with His message today, I ask that you pay it forward by sharing this message, so that you and He may also bless others.  Click subscribe to receive your message every Wednesday.

Wednesday, August 23, 2022

😎🐫🎤 Christ’s peace and presence be with you.  While sitting in the pew, waiting for Mass to begin last Sunday, I read something in the missalette that really helped me to gain a different perspective about our second reading, which was from Hebrews chapter 12.  This is what I read:

“Discipline (from Latin disciplina, meaning “teaching”…the same root as for “disciple”), which the Lord gives out of love, is painful when it is applied but it brings joy in the end.”

Now, let’s apply this to the verses below from Hewbrews 12.

“5 You have also forgotten the exhortation addressed to you as sons: “My son, do not disdain the discipline (teaching) of the Lord or lose heart when reproved by Him;

6 for whom the Lord loves, He disciplines (teaches); He scourges every son He acknowledges.”

7 Endure your trials as “discipline” (teaching); God treats you as sons. For what “son” is there whom his father does not discipline (teach)?”

“10 They disciplined (taught) us for a short time as seemed right to them, but He does so for our benefit, in order that we may share His holiness.

11 At the time, all discipline (teaching) seems a cause not for joy but for pain, yet later it brings the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who are trained by it.”

It can be easy to read “discipline” as punishment, but when we view it as teaching, things more so appear as opportunities.  In my formative years my parents purposely disciplined (taught) me many lessons and skills that have brought wisdom and knowledge to my adult years.  At basic training for the military, my training instructor (TI) purposely disciplined (taught) me lessons and skills that I still utilize daily.  In both cases, there were lesson that were learned by sight and feel.  Then there were others that were learned through an internal sense.  Likewise, the disciplines (teachings) we experience from God may be experienced as sight and feel, but a large majority of His disciplines (teachings) will be experienced on an internal level.  For this reason, we may find ourselves questioning them more than we would question the disciplines (teachings) that we can see, feel, and touch.  Take some time to ponder and reflect upon the disciplines in your life.  Think specifically about one or two moments where exchanging the word teach for discipline allows you to experience moments that you felt at the time were punishments to open the doors on them as opportunity.

Bless others and be blessed.

Shelly  :0)

If the Lord has touched you in some way with His message today, I ask that you pay it forward by sharing this message, so that you and He may also bless others.  Click subscribe to receive your message every Wednesday.

#TobyMac,BlessingOffor – The Goodness

Wednesday, August 17, 2022

😎🐫🎤 Christ’s peace and presence be with you.  In the 8th chapter of Mark, right before Jesus introduces His disciples to the horrific road He was to travel on the way to His resurrection, He asked them two questions.  First, “Who do people say that I am?”  Second, “But who do you say that I am?”

A few days ago on social media, I saw a cartoon image of Satan standing at the Pearly Gates.  There was a caption on the cartoon, but it was the picture that stuck with me and keeps drawing me back.  Yesterday morning as I was reading my morning devotionals and Bible, the thought crossed my mind…”God is extremely forgiving.  The devil must have done something really horrific for God not to let him back into heaven.”  After all, he was there before.  He knows what it’s like to be a member of the heavenly host.  I pondered this though throughout the day Tuesday and right at the end of the work day, God shared something with me.  “He never asked.” 

Satan has never asked God for forgiveness.  Which tells me, if Satan was to approach God and sincerely ask for forgiveness, I believe God would offer him forgiveness and welcome him back home.  I don’t think many of us would rank ourselves at the same sin level as Satan.  Hopefully you are much, much lower on the sin chart ranking.  But no matter where you are, moving up or down the Heaven/Hell rankings, you are one sincere conversation and request for forgiveness away from redemption, a clean slate, and an awe inspiring, eternal relationship with our Lord.

Now, I pose the question to you.  Who do you say that Jesus is? 

If you listen, He will tell you. 

Bless others and be blessed.

Shelly  :0)

If the Lord has touched you in some way with His message today, I ask that you pay it forward by sharing this message, so that you and He may also bless others.  Click subscribe to receive your message every Wednesday.

#Unspoken – One Step

Keep Moving Forward – Episode 51: DIANA Gets Interviewed?!

Christ’s peace and presence be with you.  Keep Moving Forward Episode 51 has a bit of a twist for you.  Diana is the interviewee, sitting on the other end of the couch.  It’s interesting to hear a different side of her.  Click the link below and listen for yourself. 

Friday, August 12, 2022

Keep Moving Forward – Diana Marie Keller

Episode 51: DIANA Gets Interviewed?!

Check out the episode here: https://www.buzzsprout.com/1889846/11124286

#DianaMarieKeller – Keep Moving Forward

Blog Link

Podcast Link

If the Lord has touched you in some way with His message today, I ask that you pay if forward by sharing this message, so that you and He may also bless others.

Bless others and be blessed.

Shelly :0)

Keep Moving Forward – Episode 49: Action for the ADHS Mind with Kristina Ellis and Episode 50: It’s LEVEL THE EFF UP Season!

Christ’s peace and presence be with you.  Today I have two episodes of Keep Moving Forward for you.  Episode 49 made me pause a bit to rethink different approaches to accomplishing the same goal.  It also made me what to watch Legally Blond.  Click the links below and listen for yourself. 

Monday, August 1, 2022

Keep Moving Forward – Diana Marie Keller

Episode 49: Action for the ADHS Mind with Kristina Ellis

Check out the episode here: https://www.buzzsprout.com/1889846/11061049

Friday, August 5, 2022

Keep Moving Forward – Diana Marie Keller

Episode 50: It’s LEVEL THE EFF UP Season!

Check out the episode here: https://www.buzzsprout.com/1889846/11086143

#DianaMarieKeller – Keep Moving Forward

Blog Link

Podcast Link

If the Lord has touched you in some way with His message today, I ask that you pay if forward by sharing this message, so that you and He may also bless others.

Bless others and be blessed.

Shelly :0)

Wednesday, August 10, 2022

😎🐫🎤 Christ’s peace and presence be with you.  ‘Then looking up to heaven, He sighed and said to him, “Ephphatha.” that is, “Be opened.”  And immediately his ears were opened, his tongue was released, and he spoke plainly.’ – Mark 7:34-35

Ephphatha…Through the years that has been a word that has stood out to me.  Initially because of it’s melodiousness, but also because it’s kind of fun to say…Ephphatha…and I find it interesting that Mark kept this Aramaic word in the text.  Speech and speaking are learned by first hearing.  No one comes out of the womb speaking, but the majority of babies do come out hearing.  When your hearing is impaired or completely blocked, it will affect your ability to speak clearly or even speak at all.  So, in this case, it’s not the debate of which came first, the chicken or the egg.  Hearing certainly precedes speaking.  That’s something to contemplate. 

Before speaking the word, Jesus looked up to heaven and He sighed.  Why did He look toward His Father and sigh?  Do you think He was just worn out from people not listening and needing some strength from His Father?  Or was it maybe kind of a pity sigh?  Maybe it was a sign of disappointment in the fact that He was pouring His heart out to so many, yet relatively few actually heard and understood.  We’re not alone in our struggle to hear.  Even the disciples, who experienced Jesus up close and personal, had to ask on multiple occasions what the real meaning of certain parables were.    

There have been many times in my life when I did not hear the Lord speaking to me, partly because I just didn’t know better.  I hadn’t spent enough time with Him and His word, getting to know Him and why He wanted to be with me.  And then, there were other times that I just didn’t want to hear what He had to say, so I would purposely block Him out.  It sounds pretty crappy as I read this, but the truth is what it is, and the truth is that many times I have put myself above God. 

Hearing the Lord is a choice that we have to make multiple times a day.  As we choose to be opened to hearing God and His word, our mind will be opened, our speech will be opened, our actions will be opened to fearlessly proclaiming Him to all of us who so desperately need Him in our lives. 

I say to you “Ephphatha!  Be Opened!”

Bless others and be blessed.

Shelly  :0)

If the Lord has touched you in some way with His message today, I ask that you pay it forward by sharing this message, so that you and He may also bless others.  Click subscribe to receive your message every Wednesday.

#Creed – With Arms Wide Open

Wednesday, August 3, 2022

😎🐫🎤 Christ’s peace and presence be with you.  It’s only Wednesday, but my brain feels like it’s put in a 40 hour work week already.  I haven’t worked that much yet, but not having a good balance sets my mind in a fog and it becomes a challenge to focus on something other than work.  When my brain starts getting to that numb stage, I just want to sit and do nothing, thinking that will help relax and refocus my mind.  In reality, getting up, moving around, doing physical work, and getting my eyes off a computer, phone, and TV are more beneficial for me.  When my mind is in that numb stage, I don’t want to read or talk to people, and it’s hard to convince myself to get up and move.  I try to convince myself that I’d do a better job relaxing if I did nothing.  In times like this, I can be my own worst enemy and I’m robbing myself of the peace I need to maintain balance. 

In Mark 6: 30-32 we hear about the apostles returning to Jesus and sharing with Him all they had done and taught.  Recognizing their need for some down time from their work, Jesus invites them to jump in a boat and sail to a deserted place to rest from their work.  So, what do you think that would look like for a diverse group like that?  Right away, I would imagine some of them maybe grabbed a pole or net and would do a little fishing.  Maybe they would find a calm place of shore and do a little swimming.  Maybe when they reached their deserted destination, they would cook up a meal, share some stories, and find some moments of solitude and quiet.

I believe that’s a keep point.  To gain and maintain balance, to a degree, we need to distance ourselves from our job.  But that doesn’t mean we should become a blob that melts into a couch or chair and do nothing.   Yes, we absolutely need those quiet moments alone, but we also need moments of physical activity, and interaction and discussion with others.  Each of us are unique in what that balance looks like for us.  Half the challenge is knowing what our balance combination is and the other half is working at maintaining that balance.  When I’m out of balance, I feel fatigued, my eyes are tired, I’m irritable and short tempered.  Just ask Brian, he’s experienced my unbalance first hand.  It’s not that I want to be that way, but sometimes I just don’t even know what we need to get my balance back. 

I read this quote by Archbishop Fulton Sheen Monday.  “Before undertaking a task great or small, before making decisions, before beginning a journey, the humble will acknowledge their dependence on God and invoke His guidance and His blessing on all their enterprises.” 

When I start relying on myself more than God, I get out of balance.  Our balance starting point is to first get centered and balanced with God.  He will flow through every part and aspect of your life, which is why it’s so important to start with Him.

Bless others and be blessed.

Shelly  :0)

If the Lord has touched you in some way with His message today, I ask that you pay it forward by sharing this message, so that you and He may also bless others.  Click subscribe to receive your message every Wednesday.

#Newsboys – Restart