Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Blogging Birthday!


The month of June marks two years. Two years of blogging. What a journey it's been. As I look back on all the life lessons I've shared - I'm grateful for growth in so many areas and even more grateful for God's grace in the areas where development is still needed. His direction for me is clear, "But grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ," (2 Peter 3:18a; KJV).

Passing along the lessons God is teaching me has been a joyful, and sometimes humbling experience. My goal has been to consistently share the practical truths of God's Word to bring honor and glory to Him. In the coming year, my goal remains the same.

But being consistent has its challenges. Life is hectic. Distractions will come. It's easy for me to get swept away in the current of the urgent and not attend to the important. Balance in each area of life is crucial. Staying focused and motivated are keys. King Solomon penned these wise words, "Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life," (Proverbs 4:23). Truth is, I'll find time to do what I want to do. My task is to concentrate on those things that keep my feet on the right path.

Need an example? Glad you asked. The Lord has given me a desire to write. With summer here, our daughter home from college, a number of projects needing to be tackled, and the same amount of writing to be done, I feel torn in a million directions. Instead of throwing my hands up in frustration and giving into defeat, God's Word shares a different perspective: diligence and perseverance.

It's easy to say I'll do something. Following through is the hard part. Paul wrote to the Corinthian believers about this exact situation, "And herein I give my advice: for this is expedient for you, who have begun before, not only to do, but also to be forward a year ago. Now therefore perform the doing of it; that as there was a readiness to will, so there may be a performance also out of that which ye have," (2 Corinthians 8:10-11; italics mine). These Christians had a great plan. They wanted to collect money for the churches in Jerusalem. The problem? Over the time period of a year, nothing had come of their plan. Paul encouraged them to be diligent and persevere - to follow through.

Choosing to be diligent and persevere in the face of difficulties isn't easy. But it's the right thing to do. And God's blessing will follow. "For God is not unrighteous to forget your work and labour of love, which ye have showed toward his name, in that ye have ministered to the saints, and do minister. And we desire that every one of you do show the same diligence to the full assurance of hope unto the end: That ye be not slothful, but followers of them who through faith and patience inherit the promises," (Hebrews 6:10-12).

Do you struggle with follow through? How would a commitment to being diligent and to persevere change the outcome?

Prayer: Heavenly Father, thank You for Your continued work in my life. Thank You for showing me the importance of following through - of being diligent and persevering. Give me the strength and help I need to focus on Your truth, and stay on the path You have for me. In Jesus' name, Amen.

24 comments:

  1. Congratulations on your blog birthday AND listening to the call to write! Exciting times!!

    And I don't find it difficult to follow through because I set small, reachable goals. It's fun to follow through with them!

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  2. Happy blogging birthday! Choosing to be diligent is something I can work on. Thanks for the inspiration. <3

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  3. Oh my goodness, Maria. This is EXACTLY what I am struggling with lately. I have felt convicted by my lack of follow through. God is working on me, growing me. Thank you for sharing the wisdom God imparted to you. Happy Blogging Birthday!

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  4. Jill - Thanks for stopping by and for your words of encouragement! Wonderful to hear how you've mastered follow through - smaller, attainable goals DO break down those BIG projects into more manageable pieces! Keep up the good work! God bless!

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  5. Stef - Great to see you! And thanks for sharing in the birthday cheer! Ah, diligence - it's easy to wander away from at times - but so worth the extra effort. I appreciate you and your example of diligence on the road to publication and beyond! Thanks and God bless! :)

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  6. Keli - Thanks for sharing in the blog birthday cheer, my friend! Have a wonderful week & God bless!

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  7. Ralene - Wonderful to see you! Thank you for the birthday well wishes and thanks for your honesty - sometimes knowing what we struggle with is the first step toward gaining the victory! My plan involves setting small weekly goals in the areas I'm dealing with and evaluating how I'm doing at the close of each week. Accountability is huge for me. Would love to hear about the steps you plan to implement to master diligence and perseverance. Have a blessed week, my friend!:)

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  8. Dearest Maria, Happy Blogaversary!!! Blogging is such an incredible journey and you've shared Life and Truth with us and I thank you! I wish you could just move into my neighborhood because you stir such growth in me or rather the Lord uses you to stir it.
    You mentioned carpenter ants-do your have wings? We've had them here for several years but this year our weather has been so bad that they haven't visited yet. I've found Termite spray to bid them good ridance but we still have issues from them.
    Have a wonderful evening and again thanks for sharing His heart with us.
    Hugs, Noreen

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  9. Hi Maria -

    Congrats on your second blogging birthday! I'm glad you stayed the course because you've been a blessing to me.

    Hugs,
    Susan :)

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  10. Congratulations on two years! What a wonderful milestone! Your faithfulness to sharing what's on your heart is a blessing. So glad we met through blogging. :)

    Yes, I do struggle with motivation and follow through sometimes. Trusting the Lord to work in and through me in these and other areas.

    Love and blessings,
    Karen

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  11. Noreen - Thank you for your sweet words of encouragement! It's so good to hear of God's faithfulness to stir growth in hearts who are miles away from me! To Him be the glory! I hope we get to meet in person sometime - you've been a real Barnabas!

    As far as the carpenter ants go, yes, some of them did have wings! Yuck! I used some hornet/wasp killer we had. What is the name of the product you used? I'm planning on keeping that area sprayed regularly to prevent any future issues! Have a beautiful week! God bless! :)

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  12. Susan - Great to see you my friend! So grateful for your blogosphere friendship - I always know you'll check up on me when I'm absent for awhile! Thanks for the accountability! Appreciate you much and continue to pray over your weekly prayer list! Hugs and many blessings to you! :)

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  13. Karen - Thanks for your encouraging words! I've learned much from your posts and echo your words: I'm glad we met through blogging! I'm looking forward to how God will continue to use us in this vast blogosphere. Have a wonderfully blessed week! Hugs!

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  14. Happy blogging birthday Maria, you have done a wonderful job so far!
    Yes, saying and doing are two different things, I try not to say too much as I want my yes to be yes and my no to be no.

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  15. Hi, Maria:
    Congratulations on the two years of blogging. How lovely for us that you chose to do so.

    Paragraph three of your post brought a smile to my lips because you mention two of my mantras: "guard your heart" and "we do what we want." We need to steadfastly guard our hearts to keep us from doing such things as confusing our priorities, compromising principle for ambition and generally stepping away from the daily things we must do to maintain joy and peace.

    And as for doing what we want, well, we will carve out time for what we truly want to do. This second principle is borne out of the first, so how delightful for me to find you discussing two concepts I devote much time to.

    Do I struggle with follow through? Sometimes. How am I (still) learning to overcome that? By doing one thing at a time with both hands. Getting several tasks done in a day in a half-hearted fashion brought me restlessness. Now, I focus on the task at hand and finish it, even if it takes me longer than I expected. Quality over quantity, right?

    Blessings to you and yours.

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  16. Hello, I come to via another friends blog.. I am co~author of http://heartofthehome-blog.blogspot.com/ and I enjoyed browsing your blog and wanted to introduce ourselves.. Heart of the Home is a womens ministry reaching out to women with encouragement from Gods word and his design for women as wives, mothers, friends and etc.. Hope you will get a chance to stop by and visit us, and that we can become Blogging Buddies.. Have a great weekend.. God Bless

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  17. Happy blog birthday, Maria! Following through is so hard. Thank you for the reminder about being diligent and persevering, and especially about God's blessings!

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  18. Congrats on two years! Doesn't time fly? I have no trouble sticking to something that I know is from the Lord--when I start doing it for me--then I waiver:)

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  19. Marja - Thanks so much for stopping by! It's always a joy to see your smiling face! I appreciate your encouragement and your regular visits. Have a wonderful week and may the Lord richly bless you and the work He's called you to! Hugs! :)

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  20. Janette - So good to see you! Thanks for your insightful comment. So neat to see how God brought the two concepts that are dear to your heart to the forefront of this post. It's always amazing to see/hear how God works! I'm glad you're also applying His Word to your work ethic, "Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with thy might;" (Ecclesiastes 9:10a). Keep up the good work!! Blessings to you, my friend!

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  21. Missy & Karen - Thanks so much for stopping by and introducing yourselves! Welcome to Life Lessons. Sounds like our goals are similar - to point people to the truths of God's Word and help promote growth in their spiritual lives. Looking forward to keeping in touch! God bless!

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  22. Connie - Great to see you! So glad that the Lord is right beside us to help in the follow-through process. Yes we must persist, but He is ever faithful! And will be our constant strength! Have a wonderful week. God bless!

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  23. Terri - Wonderful to see you! Thanks for the well-wishes. Awesome to hear that you're able to stick with those things you know the Lord has called you to. I think I struggle sometimes when I know the direction I'm supposed to take, but the finished product is a long way off. Can you relate? I begin questioning whether I heard the call correctly the first time...I'm so thankful God is faithful and reminds me of His direction when I get distracted! Have a wonderfully blessed week! Love and Hugs!

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