Category Archives: Random

What If?

Since I first heard the song Blessings by Laura Story on the radio, I can’t get the song, or its questions, out of my head.

Most times, when we ask God to bless us, we are really asking him to bless us with an easy, comfortable, and safe life. I’m learning that God is a lot less concerned about my comfort than about my relationship with him. When I examine people in the Bible who were close to God—those who God used in the Old Testament and those who followed Jesus in the New Testament—I notice they didn’t have easy or comfortable lives. In most cases, it was quite the opposite. Their lives were full of trials and opportunities to depend on God in the midst of storms.

I love how Laura Story explains the meaning behind her song in this video…

What if we’re supposed to consider our trials in this life as blessings?

Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. James 1:2-4

“Character cannot be developed in ease and quiet. Only through experience of trial and suffering can the soul be strengthened, vision cleared, ambition inspired, and success achieved.” -Helen Keller

Content Copyright 2011. Allison @ Anointed With Grace.

Photo credit: stock.xchng

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Filed under Faith, Random, Surviving the Dark Places, Who is God?

Some New Favorites

Painting by Alex at The Spirit Orchard

Lately, the blog has been filled with my thoughts on some fairly serious topics. Although I’m quite introspective and enjoy writing about my faith journey, I also want to have some lighter posts in the mix as well!

So today, I want to share with you some of my favorite new finds.

Cooking Blogs

I recently stumbled upon two fabulous blogs about food and cooking. I love to find and try out new recipes. These two blogs make me so happy:

The Food Gospel According to Ruth:

Ruth shares her detailed recipes with photos, which makes it so much more fun. She often includes family recipes, and many of her dishes are reminiscent of my childhood. I made this dish over the weekend, and it was so yummy!

Miranda’s Untamed Kitchen:

Miranda posts gluten-free recipes that are actually good. I am not 100% gluten-free, but I try to reduce my intake whenever possible. This hummus recipe is my new favorite! And she’s promising that tikka masala recipe soon…

Baby Gifts and Art

A friend in Alabama recently started an Etsy business, and I love her products! Alex is a mom to three beautiful children, a talented artist, and she also makes these amazing knitted pea pods for infants…


How adorable! I love the pea pods and hats and diaper covers…such great gift ideas.

Alex sells her original art (see photo at the top of this post — also amazing!) and handmade products at The Spirit Orchard. Click the link to check out her other products.

Twitter

My last new favorite thing…Twitter. Yes, I realize I’m about 4 years behind, but–after years of resistance–I finally joined. And I’m actually enjoying it (much more than facebook). You can follow me @allisonkflex.

Have a great week! If you have any new favorite things, please share them in the comments.

(Disclaimer: These are some of my personal favorite things. No one asked me to post these links and I will receive nothing in exchange for posting these recommendations.)

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Filed under Random, Recommendations

Do You Trust Me?

I feel myself descending into the pre-birthday funk. Since my 30th birthday a few years ago, I no longer get excited about my birthdays. Instead, I realize that I’m about to be another year older. I take stock of things and recognize that, in many areas of life, I am not where I always thought I would be at this age. Another year has passed and many dreams remain unmet. It weighs on me, and it just seems too late for a lot of things.

As I contemplate all of this while getting ready for church on Sunday, God enters the previously one-sided conversation:

God: Do you trust me?

Me: Well God, of course I trust you. I have believed in you for my entire life. I have entrusted my salvation to you. Duh.

(I know— it’s probably not a great idea to say “duh” to God. Thankfully, he puts up with me.)

Here is the point that God impressed on me in that moment:

Even though I know who God is . . . one who is big enough to forgive all of my sins;

Even though I know what God does . . . that he accepts me with open arms, extends his grace and mercy to me over and over;

Even though I trust God with my eternal salvation . . .

I still have a hard time trusting him with tomorrow.

Sure, I trust him with my salvation. I absolutely believe that he is sovereign, all-powerful, all-knowing, and the one who doesn’t make mistakes. So if I truly believe that, why can’t I rest in the knowledge that all of my tomorrows are safe in his hands?

Years ago, I gave a speech at my high school graduation. I recently found a copy of that speech at my parents’ house. I had not thought about it in a long time, but I used the following well-known quote in my address to our graduating class:

“I don’t know what tomorrow holds, but I know who holds tomorrow.”

There is no nice bow to wrap around this post and tie it all together. I just know that God is still teaching me something about faith. Something I thought I had figured out a long time ago.

allisonsign

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Filed under Faith, God, My Crazy Life, Random

Finding ‘Hooray!’

My friend Hilary recently sent me a link to this diagram, and it has been on my mind a lot since then:

Source: Bud Caddell

I have spent most of my life, especially my career, in the area between ‘what I do well’ and ‘what I can be paid to do’. As you can see, that is the area which clearly instructs me to learn to say no. At first, that bold statement startled me. Say no? But I do it well and I get paid for doing it!

However, existing in that junction means that I completely disregard what I want to do in favor of: what I’m expected to do, what others want me to do, what I’m good at doing, what I am paid well to do, and so on. It’s the area where I use the word ‘should’ way too much. I should keep this job because I’m good at it. I should continue to climb the corporate ladder because I can … because I have something to prove … because what else would I do?

Well, I took the first step and got off the should cycle a while ago. The problem is—I haven’t found the thing (the job, career, project, livelihood) that fits the spot marked ‘Hooray!’. I love to write, but I’m not sure I do it well and I’m definitely not sure I can be paid to do it. I am a financial consultant—I do it well and I get paid to do it—but I don’t enjoy it.

See the dilemma? What do you think? Have you found your ‘Hooray!’ spot? Any suggestions?

allisonsign

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Filed under My Crazy Life, Random