Friday, November 18, 2011

Pray for Oklahoma State University

Today has been an emotional one. This morning I received a breaking news email from our local CBS station that my beloved Oklahoma State University had yet again lost members of the athletic department in a horrific plane crash but this time in Arkansas instead of Colorado. We lost our OSU Cowgirls Head Coach-Kurt Budke and Assistant Coach Miranda Serna plus a former Oklahoma state senator Olin Branstetter and his wife Paula who were piloting the small plane. It was only back in January that the OSU family remembered the 10th anniversary of the crash that killed ten men connected with the Oklahoma State men's basketball which included players, media personnel, basketball operations, trainers and the two pilots. I will never forget how I felt that cold January evening as the 6:00 p.m. news came on and heard the words. Our favorite sportscaster had also been killed in that crash. It was devastating!

I can't put into words exactly how it feels to have been a part of this wonderful school in Stillwater, Oklahoma. Everyone always has fond feelings of their special school or college experience but there is truly something uniquely special about Stillwater and Oklahoma State University. I noticed it right off on a high school visit back in 1978. I could not believe how everyone on the sidewalks that day would speak to us, stop and ask if we needed assistance, or wave and give us a friendly smile! I thought to myself, "Wow! This is where I want to be!" I was sold from that moment on.

Please pray for all of those involved and who have been touched personally by this tragedy. My heart is heavy tonight. I can't imagine how all those directly affected at O-State feel. Personally, I think right now prayer is the best thing to begin to heal hearts. This article pretty much sums it what a lot of people are thinking.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Becoming Abnormal

Today I had so much going on at work but there was one thought that I could not get out of my head. It had been rolling around bugging me all day. I finally had to put my pen to paper and write it down. Sometimes the Lord uses the every day mundane chores of life to speak to me.

So much is on the news about the economy in trouble, people losing their homes, life is in turmoil. I see people who seemingly months ago had it all and was not shy about showing off the latest gadget or gizmo's that they had purchased for either themselves or their children. Today it is a different story with a lot of those people that have chosen to live well above their means. All one has to do is check out the garage sales lately or Craig's List to see there is a plethora of STUFF cluttering up people's homes and lives.

Today this thought came into my head as I was pondering the current state of affairs in our Nation:

"Pursuing all the popular "stuff" of life leads to cluttered homes, hearts and minds. Discontentment becomes your new normal. Be abnormal!"

I want to be abnormal! I do not want to keep up with the Joneses or to have the latest and greatest technological toy. Thank you very much! I like being debt free and having choices in life! Currently having three children in college is quite a stretch but sacrificing for my family is not a hardship. Trying to keep up with the latest and greatest only keeps people broke and for the most part discontent.

So from now on I am going to embrace the abnormal and live unlike most today. If I don't have an iPhone so be it. I don't have to have all the accouterments to really enjoy life. I am on a mission to declutter and get rid of even my excess so that I can live my life more richly and simply.

I think my battle cry for the next few months as all the gift buying frenzy begins is to embrace being abnormal. I will enjoy getting my mail in January knowing that we lived within our means and gave meaningful and thoughtful gifts to our loved ones.

Whose with me?

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Renewed Pursuit states that simplicity is the absence of complication and pursuing is listed to have as one's goal. Since I last posted Pursuing Simplicity has not been my reality. I am on the tail end of a whirlwind couple of years! While it has been exciting and thrilling to be in the midst so many changes my heart and soul still has a deep-seeded desire to seek and pursue the simple life.

Since January of 2010, when I last posted, I have had two children graduate high school, one as recently as May 2011. Moved one into college for his freshman year and now that son his headed back for his sophomore year. I have seen my third son graduate high school and decide to sit out a semester to work and experience life before going to municipal fire protection school in the spring. Our oldest is furiously trying to get finished with college and hopes to graduate in May 2012. And now we are in the throws of getting ready for our last child to enter her senior year! Yes, that will be three children that have graduated in three years. There were four years between the oldest and our second child but the last three are stair-steps.

I have met myself coming and going the past year and a half. While I love the busyness of life and the excitement that takes place when you see your children growing up and heading off to live their has been hard! I have not been focused on my writing or blogging. I have lost sight of my main goal in the process....making our lives as simple and uncomplicated as possible. The Lord has really pressed upon my heart that I need to embrace this season and to take the time to not only listen to what He is teaching me but to pour out what He lays on my heart.

I am re-dedicating myself to being more focused on keeping things simple and to pursue a less complicated life. In the process I am going to focus more on writing. I suddenly have a lot of time on my hands. The prospect of my baby girl graduating high school in May 2012 is beginning to resonate with me and the fact that I will soon have an empty nest! Where oh where has the time gone! My focus will most certainly change and my time will be dedicated elsewhere in a very short time but this pursuit of simplicity I believe will take a lifetime.

The three younger children at May 2010 Graduation

May 2011 Graduation