Tag Archives: Life

I’d Be Missing Out

We can all think of a time when we wanted to isolate ourselves from the wOrLd.  We believe if we didn’t have jobs, we wouldn’t have to deal with stress or deadlines.  If we could disconnect ourselves with people—family, friends, strangers—we’d never have to deal with awkward moments or conflict.  If we didn’t have to run errands, we could avoid being reminded of how great everyone else “has it” when we are out and about.

As the year of 2012 wrapped up, I found myself thinking a lot about all the awkward, uncomfortable, stressful and difficult moments of the year.  And you know what I realized?  If I was able to erase those moments of my life, I would have been missing out.  If I would have quit my block business after making some stressful mistakes, I would no longer get to experience the J O Y I receive when customers send me thank you notes after their blocks arrive.  I could have avoided an awkward moment by not talking to a stranger on a plane, but I would have missed out on an aMaZinG cOnVerSatiOn about his faith journey.  Not to mention the moments with friends and family through the year that involved moments of frustration, confusion or discomfort.  If I never had those interactions, our relationships wouldn’t be as close as they are today, let alone the sPeCiaL mEmoRieS we made together.  And as you know, sharing the move of our house last summer required a major gulp of humility, but I would have missed out on the sense of FREEDOM I felt by sharing my real life…just how it is…and knowing that you accept me…just the way I amgirl

Wearing your heart on your sleeve, doing things out of your comfort zone (looking for a new job, trying a new hobby, meeting new people), and standing up for what you believe in are all very hard things to do.  Many times they don’t even seem worth all the effort they require.  But let me assure you, they are.  Your life is richer, more meaningful, and above all, impacting more people, all because you are willing to face your fears, deal with hurt, and conquer challenges by moving on despite the outcome.

So what will 2013 look like for you?  This year I am welcoming more embarrassing moments, uncomfortable conversations and feelings of defeat as I work toward new goals.  You are going to have to deal with these weird feelings/emotions regardless (because we are human!) so why not do them while enriching your life?!  I don’t want to MiSs OuT on the best life I can have….do you?

Lara

Advertisements

7 Comments

Filed under Getting Real, Inspiration, Inspire, Life

Making the Best of Human Life…

Let’s face it.  Life on earth isn’t always easy.  In fact, most of the time is pretty challenging.  We deal with job losses, disappointments, cancer, troubled relationships, obesity, death, natural disasters; the list is never-ending.  We work so hard in attempt to cReAte and control an ideal surrounding, but nothing will ever be perfect…

because we are HuMaN

because we are SiNnErS

because we live on a place called EaRth.

SOURCE

Quite depressing, isn’t it?  Well it certainly can be if you let it. The reassuring part is that God knew life here would be difficult, and He wants to help lighten our load.  Sure, we could take the easy road and just be miserable until our life runs out.  But why not make the best of it while you are here?  Plus, by choosing to walk through life with Him, there will be more to look forward to when your days on Earth are over…HeAveN!

As an optimist, I am a believer that despite our challenges, we have to make the best of our HuMan lives.  How do we do that?  The obvious answer is ask God for help when you are struggling, and continue to speak to Him when days are good.  Talk to Him about your sins and ask for forgiveness when you feel guilty or know you’ve made a wrong choice.  And don’t forget to thank Him when things go your way!  When you develop this type of relationship with Him, the days won’t seem so lonely when EarThLy problems get thrown your way.  And when you feel more connected…the doors that He is opening for you will become more obvious!

Believe me, I know it is easier said than done.  But do we really have a better option?  If we are realistic with ourselves that life will consist of steady highs and lows (regardless of how hard we try to control it), why not have something CoNsTanT to lean on through it all?

Advent begins this Sunday.  There is no better time to start or enrich your relationship with God than now.  Here, on the Suede Sofa, we will be celebrating every day of Advent.  Check in daily between now and Christmas and join us as we prepare for the true meaning of Christmas!

Now is the time!  Make this the most meaningful Christmas yet!

In Christ,

Lara

1 Comment

Filed under Getting Real, Life

Did We Make The Right Decision?

It is hard to believe we have been in our new location for about 4 months now.  Time has flown and we have savored every second of being here!  Still no regrets!

The last time I posted about this, I showed you a picture of what the front of our house looked like right after the mOvE.

Since that time, we had the front addition built back on!  We L O V E it!

I will paint the house in the spring (hopefully!) and when we re-roof the house (someday) we’ll move the pipes and attic fans to the other side to make things a little prettier :)  We will also extend our garage and make a porch that connects the garage and new addition .  Of course, lots of pRojeCts here and there, but nothing that can’t get accomplished in a lifetime (and if you know me well…you know that I LOVE a GoOd project)!  What a trooper of a husband I have :)

After reflecting on our crazy 6-month experience, I want to eNcouRaGe you to make steps in your life that YOU feel are right.  If we would have listened to some people, we may not have moved our home.  We would have made poor financial decisions because we felt the pressure of others.  We would have missed out on the fAiTh journey we experienced during the moving process.  I’m not saying that is was always easy, but when you feel confident in your gut, you’ll sleep better at night…regardless of what everyone else is thinks.

If you are considering making some big life decisions, don’t be distracted by the rest of the world.  Team up with God and the other person you are making the decision with, and you’ll be able to enjoy living life the way you want.  After all, it is YOUR life to live!

If you have missed my other posts leading up to this point read Why Move A House? , Demo Work , Moving Day and Moving Our House!

~Lara

4 Comments

Filed under Getting Real, Life

When Life Doesn’t Turn Out The Way You Thought…

It’s upsetting, I know.  I think we would all be lying to ourselves if we said that eVerYtHinG in our life has turned out exactly, if not better, than what we had planned.  Sure, some areas in our life have exceeded our expectations, but let’s face it; other areas have been a big disappointment.

You are experiencing what all people go through at some point in their life.  We all have crosses to bear so don’t be fooled into tHinKing the rest of humanity never has to deal with disappointments.  We do.  It’s just a part of living.  Frustrating, I know…but that is why heaven will be so GREAT!  It will truly be a life with no worries, disappointments, or sadness.

We aren’t in heaven yet, so where do you go from here? Take a sigh of relief, because you are in G O O D hands.  God knows that we live in a difficult place and He is here to help us!  I know you can’t iMaGinE how He could fix your situation.  And He probably won’t fix it anywhere close to what you had in mind (nor in your timeframe!), but He IS the answer.  As hard as it is, just trust, pray and watch for His signs and He will lead you on the right path.  Be pAtieNt and know He will ease the pain we are going through.  Either way, what do you have to lose?

Hang in there!

Lara

1 Comment

Filed under Faith, God

It’s Never Too Late

Well, we are over half way through Lent and I wish I could tell you that this year’s experience was the best one ever. Unfortunately I’ve struggled a bit this year, and to be honest, there is no good excuse why. I always have GOOD intentions throughout the day but life seems to be too big of a distraction to F O C U S on God. How sad is that!? It’s easy to feel guilty for not spending enough time with God and not giving Him the thanks He deserves, for my bLeSSinGs are plentiful. At this point it would be easy to pack it in this spring and try again this Christmas…

LUCKLY, God knows our hearts and if we are paying attention, he will give us the MoTiVaTiOn we need to keep going. Doug and I were reading our nightly “Word Among Us” meditations and the reading couldn’t have spoken more directly to me.

“…we can begin to experience God’s presence and grace as a tiny trickle that grows wider and deeper as we yield to it. As we wade more deeply into his life, we can experience God nourishing us and healing us…We will prosper in this river, for it promotes and supports every sort of life, even lives like ours! …Why not step into the river today? Ask Jesus to lead you. He will start you gently, in the shallow end, where the water is ankle deep. And every day he will take you one step further, bringing you into ever-deepening waters that can HEAL, empower, forgive, and restore you. Just follow his lead each day and soon enough, you’ll be swimming!”

No matter how fast Easter is approaching, it isn’t too late to start wading in the water. Come and join me at the river—

~Lara

4 Comments

Filed under Faith, God

Are You Afraid of Dying?

I got a call Sunday that my grandma passed way.  Dealing with this type of phone call is difficult.  Initially I was shocked, but it wasn’t until later that I was flooded with all of her mEmoRies.  Moments like that hit you out of nowhere and it seems like no matter what you do, you can’t keep the tears from running down your face.  I know that she is in a better place and will finally reunite with her husband.  But does that keep me from hurting?  Definitely not, to say the least.

How do you cope with death?  It is such a hard thing for anyone to talk about, let alone experience with a loved one.  I find it ironic that I am even typing this to you.  Six days before my Grandma passed, Doug and I were talking about how we felt God initiated a lot of our coNverSatioNs regarding heaven over the last 6 months.   We had watched the ABC special “Heaven—Where Is It?  How Do We Get There” and had given the “Heaven Is For Real” book to our children for Christmas.  When we had talked about it again last Monday night, Doug asked me if I had this weird feeling God was preparing us for a death.  I answered, “Yes”.  It was such an unsettling feeling.  I was scared.  But I’m glad we had talked about it because we both agreed that regardless of when and if it was going to happen, we now had a clearer idea of what hEavEn is like and feel more confident in addressing this to our children.

As I was wondering what my Grandma was experiencing in heaven, I happened to run outside to get something, and this is what I saw. Heaven IS for real!

Even though I know these things, am I still afraid of dying?  Of course I am.  Talking and thinking about dying is difficult (and scary), but it is important so you can be better prepared for when it happens. Just remember this–when we lose someone from this world, we should be thankful for the time that we spent with the ones we loved, and not sad for the time that we didn’t.
Much love,

Lara

1 Comment

Filed under Faith, Family, Getting Real, God, Hard Reality, Life, People, Relationships

From the Confessional

Has LiFe turned out the way you thought it would?  I have to confess that mine is very different than I had “planned”.  After we got married I envisioned living in the country, only working from 8-5, and having all the time in the world to play with my kids and make pErfeCt sugar cookies with them like you see on the commercials.  I feel like I woke up one day and immediately thought, “Hey!  What happened to that perfect life plan I had?  Give it back!”  Have you ever felt like that?

Many days I feel like I’m chasing my own tail.  Even though I’m a stay-at-home mom, there are never enough hours to do the laundry, make (decent) meals, and remember to send birthday cards to loved ones on time (or at all!).  After living in St. Louis for 2 years we DO live in the country (yay!) BUT we DON’T have a tYpiCal life style.  My husband travels often so we might eat breakfast with him instead of supper and we get up before dawn to fill orders for my business before we start our “day” jobs.  Soon we plan to move closer to where we grew up so we can farm more.  Moving means not being sEttLed for a while and a new location means new challenges. See why I feel like I’m chasing my tail?!

I’ve realized that even though my life is different and crazier than I had planned, why couldn’t it mean that it may end up bEtteR? Looking back, my previous “plan” would be less stressful, but maybe even a little boring.  People that take risks and live life to the fullest often have more sAtisfaCtion.  Despite taking a detour from the “plan”, I guess I’m willing to accept the challenge for a chance of a more rewarding future.

What is a “normal” life anyway? The more I think of it, I don’t know many friends or family that have an 8-5 work life and lounge around after work.  Life is just hectic sometimes I guess.  Keeping focused on the GooD things that come from this “unplanned” life is the most important thing.

~Lara

1 Comment

Filed under Getting Real, Hard Reality, Life