Category Archives: Life Coaching

New Beginnings

It was a hot August day that I walked the halls of this school for the very first time.

A new beginning.

I was young, very young is seems to me now looking back,

and I came to meet with the principal and to see my classroom.

That first year of teaching in Virginia was a never to be forgotten year for me.

And that first day – I can still remember-

students flooded into the school, lots of little bodies,

and down the halls to the classrooms.

Curious. Full of energy. Some children very chatty

while others only stared. Fear written all over their small faces.

I remember standing there before my wide-eyed first graders

and wondering how in the world I would be able to teach so many.

But those boys and girls smiled and somehow their acceptance of me

encouraged my nervous heart and calmed  my uneasiness that year.

Books and papers. Going over simple procedures.

Names on each desk. A simple story. Brief introductions. Crayons and pencils.

And before I knew it

they all got on their busses and went home.

Day one complete. Relief.

Yes, more than twenty years of ‘first days’.

Standing at the door and welcoming children.

Warm supportive principals and staff.

Every year was different.  New challenges.  Changes to be made.

But always we did it as a school working together.

I remember the many, many volunteers

that shared their time

to help the teachers.

For it takes everyone’s help, doesn’t it, to do the job right?

Eager learners and some not so eager.

And then my mind races forward to those years of

watching my own daughter walk down the long, long hall

to her kindergarten classroom

and being met by the nicest teacher. Lump in throat moments.

Colorful bulletin boards.

Everything so bright and inviting.

And then another daughter walked the halls

bookbag over her back

and she, too, became a student.

I can see it still so clearly.

Yes, each new year brings waves of memories and excitement.

The sound of buses rolling brings a tinge of sadness.

Another year. A new group of students. Learning to read and do so much more.

Let’s help to make this year the very best for all the boys and girls.

We all can help in so many ways.

Volunteer to help in the classroom.

Be supportive of the teachers and staff.

Eat lunch with a child and listen to them share their day.

Above all

let’s encourage all those who are working to teach the children.

For these are our schools and these children are ours too.

Don’t miss the adventure of a new year.

Step into the action and lend a hand.

You’ll never regret it.

There is wonder and shining moments galore

inside the walls of every school

for those who look for them.

 

 

 

The Perils of Hurry

I got up early, reached for my list and quickly scanned the items

wondering how in the world I would get it all done. Sigh.

Reaching for a cup of freshly made coffee

I sank down into the comfortable chair –

the one that I sit in to have my Quiet Time.

Flipping the pages, I turned to the reading for the day

but inside my mind was still racing –

already thinking about all that needed to be accomplished.

As my eyes read over the verses –

verses cherished —

I found my mind wandering back to that long to do list.

Pulling my thoughts back again, I saw those words.

Words I’ve read many, many times before.

“In quietness and confidence shall be your strength.” (Isaiah 30:15 NKJV)

Wouldn’t it be wonderful if I had some quietness today?  I mused.

But no way for me.

No, my life is too busy.

Sigh.

But the strangest thing happened as I closed my Bible and began to pray.

It was as if I sensed Him looking at me and saying, “Why not?”

Really, I thought. Could I possibly eliminate some of the hurry from my life?

Me? A single parent. Working full time.

How ridiculous is that!

But just as quickly I began to wonder.

Had I begun to make excuses for my busyness?

Had I joined in the hurry sickness of our day?

Was I allowing it rather than disciplining my own life?

Throughout the rest of the day and the days that followed

I realized that I needed to

Unhook

Disconnect

Say no

And play more.

Without realizing it I had allowed the tyranny of the urgent

to creep into my life

causing me to be overstressed and overcommitted.

As a result I was not living in the strength He wanted me to have.

I wasn’t victorious in ways He intended for me to be.

That realization was like a huge light coming on.

Only I could change it.

And change it I would.

Over time I began to manage time better and with wisdom.

More time for retreats and less rushing.

Instead of living life to the max

I began to build in margin and allow time for simply doing nothing.

Instantly my creativity began to increase and I slept better.

Quickly I noticed a slowing within and my soul becoming filled.

It’s a change that I’ve continued to work on –

The press of living around us is something none of us can completely escape

But those words reminding me of the importance of quiet have become like

markers in the sand.

He has promised to supply all of our needs —

Our need for rest,

Our need for strength

Our need for wisdom

We must choose to live intentionally.

One day at a time.

Yes, as we depend upon Him to guide our days

And rest in His pace

We, too, can learn to live in quiet and confidence.

Join me, won’t you?

In The Waiting Room

It’s been one of those times lately

when I’m aware that I’m on hold in the waiting room of life.

I’ve prayed and prayed and prayed

and there seems to be no answer.

Day after day. Night after night. No seeming change.

“God is faithful,” I say again. And down deep in my heart I know that it is true.

But this narrow waiting room is tough.

It traps me.

I can’t go forward – can’t make a decision-

until I know.

Alone I remind myself of the truth –

God’s silence is how it feels, it is not how it is.

No, He is here. He is with me and He knows.

But I struggle humanly wanting to cut short the process and fast forward life.

When stuck in the desert I must remember the Truth.

He is here.  He is with me. He is with you. Always.

Years ago I struggled with a decision

One that would change the rest of my life.

I longed for God’s Will.

I hungered for Him to just tell me.

But day after day there was only silence

and night after night the same.

As frequently happens on planet earth

Time was running out.

I needed to make a decision.

Would I adopt a second child

or would I continue on to get my PhD in Family Studies?

It was easier to just go ahead with the academic work.

I had already been accepted into the doctoral program.

But

there was this nagging uncertainty and lack of peace.

A little girl needed me.  I thought I sensed that crazy thought.

I know it was ridiculous.

Why look at my age –  and I had long since given away all my little baby girl things.

But the noise within me and without grew with the passing of time.

God, where are you? I cried.

Quite suddenly I decided to get away for a few days –

to get away from work and daily responsibilities and all the normal routines.

I took my young daughter out of school

and started driving to the beach.

Mile after mile I drove all the way pondering the life changing choice before me.

Day after day I walked the beach in the early morning hours.

Day after day.

One step on the sand at a time.

Listening. Asking but mostly being still. Sea air blowing my hair moments.

I saw no visions,

heard no voices,

no fireworks or writing in the sky.

Simply peace.

And that growing desire to do what He wanted me to do.

Yes, Lord, I cried out into the silence while the tears trickled down my face.

Yes, Lord. I say yes.

With that it was as if everything was set into motion.

Another adoption was begun

that eventually ended in my going back to Russia.

I walked out of the waiting room and into the wild, crazy ride of an international adoption.

I faced challenges and was stretched in many ways

But I knew that He with me.

During those early morning walks on the beach I had sensed His Peace,

and that stayed with me

reminding me that when He calls me to do something much bigger than I

He is with me. I do not need to be afraid.

Silence never means you are alone. That is how it feels.

But that same silence only says He is very present

and at the right time

He will reveal the next step

Are you in the waiting room right now?

Do you feel the pressure of needing to know?

Rest in Him. He satisfies the need of every trusting heart.

May our waiting room experiences be transformed into worship.

And with that we both can receive His peace.