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When was the last time you played hide and go seek?
Believe it or not, I usually play it every night.
My daughter loves it. It is apart of her extensive bedtime routine. ( Long story, I feel a future post coming on, heheheh.)
One of the first times we started this bedtime routine, which starts out with Hide and Seek, I noticed that for some reason I felt super competitive.
Over Hide and Seek!
Which got me thinking, why am I turning something so sweet and innocent, like hide and go seek into a competitive sport? I was participating in the game for my daughter, and she didn’t care if I stumped her at finding me or not. She just wants me to play with her, so she can have the joy of finding me.
I believe that God too, loves the game of Hide and Seek.
According to a simple Blue Letter Bible search, on “seek Him” it found reference to those words 89 times in 35 verse. Such as Deuteronomy 4:29 and Psalm 22:26
Further evidence of Hide and Seek had been at church. Our pastor, one Sunday morning, and many mornings since that day has animatedly demonstrated this very point. That God loves to play hide and seek too. The only difference is I believe that God does “level up” the experience as we grow in His word. ( More on this in another upcoming post)
Today I felt led to share my experience that I had just this past Tuesday. As real-life evidence, to further illustrate this idea.
See I had plans on Tuesday. I was going to meet with an amazing lady from church to talk about some heavy things that were on my heart. I had planned to go to a wonderful meeting of women that same night and celebrate a year of growth together. Everything was going to plan. I felt that I had greatly managed my time. It was a thing of beauty, in my eyes at least.
I woke up sad.
I prayed and the sad was still there.
After I prayed I realized that I didn’t want to bring my heavy energy into the beautiful group of ladies that I had planned to celebrate with. It would not have glorified God in my attending feeling like this. Lastly, it would not have been good self-care for me. I was not in a celebrating anything kind of mood.
I needed to get to the bottom of this “sad” and the only way that was going to accomplish this was, I had to take the time and really sit with God and hash out some things. I knew that the “sad” had something to do with a word God had given me in church (no less), a couple of weeks before. A word that didn’t match up with who God is.
But God spoke it into my spirit!
What is a girl to do with that?
I did that.
And every day since.
So I contacted a wonderful, strong, woman of God. A woman I knew that had some experience in this area. She was the woman from church that I had planned to see that day.
I humbly brought my sad and confusion to her and we talked. It didn’t go exactly as I had thought it would go, but in retrospect now, it had gone exactly to His plan, all along. Praise God! His plan was sooooo, way better than mine.
After our meeting, I didn’t know how to feel. I didn’t know how to think and I all I wanted to do was just drive home. But deep inside I knew that was not what came next. So… I drove. I prayed. He answered.
Believe it or not there really is a Sherwood Forest in Green Bay, Wisconsin. It had been a 5 minute (if that) bike ride from our old house. In the shadow of the great Lambeau Field.
So, Sherwood Forest, it was.
I parked my trailblazer, and honestly, I felt a little silly.
What was I supposed to DO there?
I was even a little childish about it if I am being honest.
You know the kid that begrudgingly does what they are told but really doesn’t know why they are doing it.
So I found the bench that had popped up in my head when I felt led to go to Sherwood Forest.
Then I remembered that I had to pick up some supplements from my chiropractor in Howard. After about 15 min or so, of sitting in Sherwood Forest. I said a short prayer and got back into my car. As I got closer to the chiropractor’s office I saw a farmers market’s sign and felt that was my next stop.
At this moment it dawned on me.
Had it been God’s plan the whole time that this Tuesday was for Him and I to play hide and seek all afternoon?
Was it His way of creating space for me to make time to relax? To model what relaxing in His eyes can look like for me? In other words, help me practice relaxing that does not involve DO-ing something while relaxing? ( Long story)
As I sat in the parking lot of the Farmers Market, not knowing why I was there. I felt like I should bring some money with me.
Stopping at a Farmer’s market had not been on my to-do list that day, so I only had the leftover change in my car. I felt led to walk this very small vendor area, with less than $2.00 in my pocket. I obeyed. I walked. I listened.
While listening to God, I noticed a musician playing and singing so beautifully to all the people passing by and thought, “I wonder if anyone really notices he is there.” Yes, they probably hear his music, but do they SEE him.
At that moment I knew what the change in my pocket had been for. It wasn’t for me. It was to bless another. It was like opening the door to the upstairs closet where I know my daughter loves to hide and saying, “Found you, God!” You see on God’s kingdom calendar, on this particular Tuesday, God had been planning on hiding at that Farmers Market and He wanted me to find Him there. He wanted me to bless this man with some money. For whatever reason, only God knows what the $2.00 meant to this man. But for me, it was the hiding place God chose for me to find Him at this day.
It was to show me that sometimes when I don’t know what to do next or when I feel lost to STOP. And sit in a parking lot. Or DROP, what I am doing and just be. Or to be still enough to participate in HIS daily game of Hide and Go Seek.
I believe this to brings Him great joy,of being found by us.
Matthew 7: 7-8
Feel free to share any Hide and Seek stories in the comments or in our closed Facebook Group.
You’re it. ( Oops sorry wrong game. Hehehe)
Stuff is everywhere. We have kid stuff, paper stuff, emotional stuff- you get my point. STUFF!
Below is my reflection, my way of dealing with the magnitude of stuff I currently have at ,one of my parents apartments, my sisters house, the condo that we have been living at for about 10 days so far, my parents house and a moving container. That is A LOT of personal items to keep track of. Its all waiting for 2 more days until we finally get to move into our new house. It is my prayer that you find encouragement and/or some value in this. At the very least I hope you see that you are not alone in, “Stuff.”
In my reflection I came up with three Categories:
I can’t seem to get rid of this stuff!
You know what I am talking about. Like that shirt, the one that is kind of to small or even way to big. It might have some holes in it, but it’s comfortable, so you keep it.
All of this, I don’t like and don’t want. Yet it still remains…
This stuff I can not seem to find!
It makes me feel crazy!
Like when you have torn up your whole house to find your car key’s or cell phone, because you can’t find it for the millionth time.
Its there one minute and the next its GONE.
Has this happened to you too?
As I mentioned briefly above, I never seem to have enough time.
What about you? What kinds of stuff do you like, need and want? Stuff that you can’t find or find difficult to make time for?
Think of our laundry room for just a minute.
I have yet to figure out why this room is the room where everything that no one knows what to do with ends up. At least in my house it did. We will see if this holds true for our next house. Maybe you have a different room like this at your house. If so, comment and share with us on which room you find to be the room in your house where these items end up in.
What about these “lost socks” of the group?
Which brings me back to the stuff that really has no other definition than “Stuff.” You know the stuff that when a co-worker asks, “What have you been up to? The answer you might give back is, “Stuff.” This is the kind of “Stuff”, I don’t know what I want to do about it.
All of that to say,” You are not alone!” We all feel these things. No one has it all figured out. I will be the first one to admit- I don’t. It is always easier to see all the Stuff in others lives and what to do about them. It is a lot harder sometimes to see our own. Me included. As I reflected I thought about how all this stuff starts to become “normal.” It just becomes apart of the background of our lives.
Kind of like the refrigerator.
We all have one and we know its there, but on a day to day basis we don’t think about the fridge until it stops working. Then its a big deal. In those moment we appreciate the fridge a little more than we did the day before.
We appreciated the fridge because something changed and then it went back to normal, once it was fixed. We all enjoy the comfort of knowing what comes next, our routines- the status quo. But change is good. Change can be a very healthy thing. Change usually brings up things, stuff that we would just rather stay have stayed behind the refrigerator forever.
With all of this moving and packing, I have gotten rid of a lot of old STUFF. In all forms of the word. With getting rid of it all- such as, the stuff that has not served me in some time. I believe that it creates space for all the new and wonderful stuff God has for me and my future. It has also given me a whole new perspective on attaining MORE STUFF. ( Which is that -I don’t need any more stuff. Nope!)
I encourage all of you to prayerfully consider where in your life you could use a new perspective and take inventory of all of your STUFF. See what shakes out.
If you really want to shake it up and you need more room in your house. Pack it all up. Seriouly. Every 5 or 10 years I am going to do this. Just to see how much I have and just feel blessed. Thank God for all He has given me and provided for my family. Then give A LOT away!
This method, I feel, will help me to find things I didn’t even know I had, or maybe find items that were from an old season and never realized I had moved on from, because they had become apart of my everyday background. I found a lot of that in the move.
Thanks for listening to my sweet abundant life story. Join me. Comment to this post or join us in the Facebook Group.
You are not alone. Even Jesus struggled. Yes, you read that correctly. Jesus struggled. He warned us that in this life there would be trouble. But that He overcame this world, so WE could have life in abundance.
I am struggling too. Struggling is a part of life. It’s not fun. It is hard. No one wants to struggle.
I find in these moments or seasons of struggle, are where supernatural beauty can be found. It’s where, I think, God puts life-changing nuggets, as my friend once called them, in our paths to find.
I was looking out my car window waiting at a stop light when I had a thought- one I think most of us have had, from time to time. The thought was,” whats the point of doing good?” I save money and it’s never enough. Or, I did everything I was told to do, but that too was still not good enough. I think the hardest struggles are the ones you work hard at, put forth your very best, but the result you were working so hard to achieve, didn’t turn out the way you expected it would.
As I sat in my car thinking about this, for less time than it took for the light to change. These were the options I came up with.
Give up on being good. What is good anyway? My good can be different than what you think is good. Or what my neighbor thinks is good. I could decide to be self-focused and do life completely different. I could give up on going out of my way to be kind. I could be nasty and bitter. In other words, do the exact opposite of what and who I am right now.
I could continue to keep walking the path I believe God has laid out for me to walk. I could continue to show God’s love through my imperfect human self. Or I could do the things God leads me to do, even in the face of ” not good enough.”
See, I know that God is glorified in my weakness.
I know you are thinking, that’s great, but weakness doesn’t feel so good.
In my experience, and the more times I am reminded about this- when I take the time to picture my weakness glorifying GOD! The easier it is for me to feel weak.
I tried Option 1, about 5 months after I graduated high school. Now looking back it was exhausting and I felt burnt, dry, empty and so many more feelings inside. Yes, I got to DO what I wanted in that moment, but that “high” never lasted long and the feelings came right back. Sometimes with more baggage than I had before. Yuck!
Five or so years of living with this mindset, and having a beautiful newborn son, at that time. I knew something had to change. I had this feeling that I needed to KNOW what was actually written in the Bible.
Since that moment, and until now, I slowly began to choose option 2, day by day. Someday’s I went back to option 1, but now those day’s have turned into moments that only last the time it takes for a traffic light to change.
I finally came to realize, in this moment, more than any other. If I do my best and even if it is, “not good enough”, in my eyes, in that moment. I have the peace, now; that I did my best. I know it. God knows it. The cherry on top of all of this is, unlike option 1, there is no baggage that comes with it.
God is so great to me all the time, but I love that He meets us where we are at and talks to us in ways that we get it. He showed me Option 1 this way.
A cold, gray, wall that leads nowhere.
I know I have so many things I want to do and see and people to help and talk to. The abundant life that Jesus died to give me. I want to experience life in abundance as many days as I can before I get to live in Heaven with God forever. So a cold, gray, mindset; does not get me to the places and people I want to see and experience. So that is not the option for me.
Then I thought of Option 2 and this is what God showed me.
This picture shows me that regardless of what I feel like, see, think or believe about my current struggle.
Leads me to the life that I want to live out.
I would love to hear from you.
What are you struggling with?
In these moments, at the traffic lights, what options come to you?
Please feel free to share them in the comments section. Or join us in my Facebook Group: Simple Life Steps with Sandy
My heart is so full of thanks today. I have a lot of people to thank, so what better way than to share this moment with the whole world.
This whole post is one gigantic THANK YOU and a HUG!!!!
When I started this journey with God to health and wellness, I heard about this amazing blender.
Called the Vitamix.
At the time, I could not, in good conscious buy a new blender, when the one I had worked just fine. Especially not one that expensive.
My wonderful brother, on the other hand, after making fun of me for wanting a blender that was that pricey, bought one for himself. So I used his for awhile. (Almost broke it a couple of times! Oops, good thing the Vitamix is built tough.)
Driving 45 mins to use a blender, is not the most cost effect idea either but I saw my family too, not just the blender. hehehe
With a family and a house, stuff always comes up that takes higher priority than a shiny, new, amazing blender.
This year, I don’t know if God blessed me with more customers or if I just spent less overall. But when it came to the end of December, I had an extra $100 in cash. I sat there and thought, WOW! Nothing came to mind, that I wanted, or needed. It occurred to me that I had money from other Christmas gifts too. To make it even sweeter, I noticed I was still busy come January. (Notoriously dead at the salon). All that to say this, God was providing for something but I was not seeing what that was for just yet.
Fast forward to this past Friday afternoon, I was trying to make a smoothie. Like any other day. Sadly, our trusty bullet, which was very very old,(like I want to say 10+ years old) was leaking from the crack in the base of the blade. It had been cracked for some time but not leaking to this extreme.
Oh, I also forgot to mention, all the cups we had were barely working.
So we were down to one broken cup and a cracked blade.
It was getting bad.
It took 10 min or more to blend up one 8oz smoothie. That was it!
Time to retire the bullet and pick out a new blender.
Yes, I wanted the Vitamix, but it is so expensive and the sale they always have at Costco was in November, right after black Friday. It’s January, so there was no way it would still be on sale.
So I jumped on Costco’s website to see if any other blender was on sale. January, I guess, everyone thinks more about getting healthy, so ALL blenders (most) were on sale.
Even the VITAMIX!
The sale had two days to go, so I had to decide, to get a cheaper blender, or if it was time to get the blender I had wanted.
I got all my cash together, every last cent. Christmas money and the first few days of working. I was $39.99 short.
So I wrote out the balance with a check!
HUGE THANKS to my parents, between Christmas and my dad’s haircut (uncle too), my extremely generous customers giving a little extra love in Christmas tips. Today I got to buy my brand new, red Vitamix! Still on sale.
Thank you all. I appreciate each and every one of you. From the bottom of my heart.
After I brought it home, I just sat in the kitchen and was taken a back how blessed I am.
This was a personal victory too, in so many ways. I almost decided to save this blessing for new tires on my husbands car or that “thing” that always comes up. Like I always do. Not today. The money was a blessing. I decided not to live in a place of lack. Instead, I chose to live in a place of abundance. God will provide for those things at that time. We needed a new blender. God provided the opportunity and the money to pay for it in CASH.(plus a tiny amount in check form )
Thank you to all who read this post. For being a witness to my life.
What is one way today that you can live in a place of abundance? Please comment below, I would love to be a witness to your life too! Or post it in my newly made Facebook group!!! Join Today!
Why on earth am I saying Happy Thanksgiving?
Yes, I know it’s February.
February 14th to be exact.
It started with my sweet Vanessa’s excitement over Valentine’s day at school. So excited in fact she couldn’t remember what it was called. At some point, I believe she said something to the effect of “Happy Thanksgiving.” In the hopes of helping her remember what it was called, I explained to her that Valentines began with the same letter as her name. V like Vanessa. So we continued talking and again she said, “Mom, at Thanksgiving tomorrow, at school…..”The next part was priceless. She shook her sweet little face and said, ” No, that’s not it.”
It got me thinking.
I am not a huge fan of Valentine’s day. I personally think it’s a Hallmark holiday. In other words, it’s only around for card companies, flower shops, and candy stores. There’s nothing wrong with that. It’s just not for me. Being allergic to flowers, and believe it or not, chocolate is not a huge deal for me. There is not much left for me to get out of Valentine’s day.
So when my sweet Vanessa said ” Thanksgiving,” instead of Valentine’s day, it got me thinking. I guess I got caught up in the hype and I lost the point of the day in the first place. I have been focusing on things to be thankful for, so why not use “Valentines day,” as a reminder of thanks and gratefulness instead of an over hyped expectation. That is the whole heart intention of Valentine’s day in the first place, Right? Thinking about it through the lenses of thanksgiving has helped me to see that it is a much-needed reminder to be thankful for the people you love, so why not call it
So this is what my sweet husband got me for “Happy Thanksgiving”
I know I am weird, but this does not make me sick. This is a treat for me.
So I encourage all of you out there. To reclaim these “festivals,” as your own. In other words, you have permission to make the world’s celebrations whatever you want them to be for you and your family.
Thank you for being a witness to our first ever Nikson Family “Happy Thanksgiving”!
Ps. Pray for Vanessa. I think she might be feeling that we are making fun of her. I told her she had such a great idea that Daddy and I decided to change the name of the day for our family because Daddy and I liked her idea better. She was not amused.
Side-note: She now remembers every time to call it Valentine’s day.
Please comment below your “out of the box” holiday name or tradition your family celebrates.
As I sat, during my prayer time, I thanked God for my health. It occurred to me, I thank Him for that almost every day now. Maybe even more than once a day. I was so sick, for such a long time. (Check out my about me page for more details on what that looked like. )
So I wanted to share this with the world.
Thank you, Lord, for my health. You and you alone gave me a priceless gift. I will be forever grateful. So I have devoted my life to sharing what I have learned and continue to learn from you daily Lord, to help others in their journey to health and wellness, because of that gift.
John 10:10 is one of my favorite verses. ” Jesus came, for us to have life in abundance.” I hold this verse dear to my heart. I was not living life in abundance. I could barely live. I want to live the life Jesus died for me to have. Hehehe, I was going to type ” So every day now I live life to the full ” as other translations say, but as I sit here typing this to you, I laugh. I laugh because now I think I am overcompensating for the past. I try to put too much into a single day. That’s not healthy or helping me either. Errr ! :-p So I guess the moral of this story is to live life in abundance, off balance, on purpose. 🙂
I am grateful that I have healthy children.
I am grateful that I have food in my refrigerator. Even if it is more lettuce than “fun food”. It is still food and that’s more than some people have.
P.s Don’t get me wrong lettuce, veggies and greens are very good for everyone. Including me. I am just not a fan of eating them. Just being honest.