Thursday, October 17, 2019

friends, books, spare time, and life

I was looking back on some early posts that I wrote on this blog, and between that and chatting with someone about blogging and why I do this, I have been reminiscing.  I also started playing around with the way this blog looks and I changed it up a little.  Most people probably no longer read this from a real computer, but that's the only way you can see some changes I made to the old blog in the last couple of days.  Speaking of reading from a real computer versus using just your phone, if you get on a real computer, you can see the blogs I love listed on the right side, and that I've been reading for years.  Several of them have been around doing this since around the same time I started this blog, which dates all the way back to 2007, when my kiddos were a mere nine, eight, and four years old.  I was telling someone the other day that even though I like the WordPress blog site better than this one (Blogger), I could never change, because all those posts wouldn't transfer.  And I would cry if I lost them.

Because the reason I write all this is for my own benefit.  Mostly, I use this as a way of just keeping track of things.  Some people do pictures, some do baby books, I blog.  The second and most important reason why I write on this space is to share about Jesus, and I pray that what I write always points to Him.  Sometimes I don't know what to write, or I'll wonder why I even still bother with this thing, and then I'll pray and the Lord will give me an idea to write about.  Other ways the Lord has used this blog in my own life is by reading books.  I don't know how certain authors have gotten my name and blog address, but I've had some of my favorite authors reach out to me about reading and reviewing their books.  Sometimes I'll write a blog post, other times I'll just review on Amazon or GoodReads.  Whatever they ask for, I'll do, because it gets me a free copy of their book.  Just yesterday was the day when, three years ago, Robin Jones Gunn's personal assistant emailed me about my blog, and asked me to write about three of her books.  And then they sent me all three copies which were autographed.

I think that's cool, and I'm not sure how it's all happened, but I'm thankful for it and don't want to take it for granted.  I've also done this for Karen Kingsbury, David Platt, Max Lucado, Anne Graham Lotz, Beth Moore, Kelly Minter, Lisa Harper and maybe one or two others.  The common denominator with all those authors is that they write bible studies, or what is considered Christian fiction/non-fiction.

I blame part of my book problem on this blog.

Anyway, I didn't know what to write about today, so I thought I'd share a little about this old blog, and a few other things.  Also, before I started writing this post, I was thinking about last night, which leads me to the topic of friends.  Every Wednesday night, a few friends and I go out after church.  We call this Fries and Friends, but last night we called it Friends and Chips, because we switched up the location.  I'm so grateful for this life I live with such godly friends all around me.  We're not perfect, trust me, but we love Jesus and we love to talk about Him and we love to encourage each other.  I don't ever want to take these women in my life for granted, because so many I know don't have this in their life.  I pray for them, when I think of that, because life is hard, and I cannot imagine life without such women.  The ones that I interact with the most have come from either church or from a bible study group.  I thank God for these women, and I pray for them all regularly.

Another thing on friends, before moving on...a couple of weeks ago, I wrote about my sons and how they've been struggling with this issue of friends.  I hesitated to write that for weeks, because though I'd not written about it before, it had been going on for months.  I didn't want to be all dramatic about it, though, which was why I hesitated so much before writing it and hitting that "publish" button.  But I did write it, and I even shared it on social media, and I can't even remember how many people reached out to me about that.  I already mentioned how I like to pray before I write here, and I asked God to use that on the day I wrote that post, and I believe He did use it to encourage me, for one, but also several others.  Several people private messaged me in the days following that, and it led to some really good conversations about moving forward from here.  Nothing has changed yet, and at this point, I don't expect it to, but we've all excepted that life looks different these days for my youngest sons.  I'm okay with it now, though, and I know God will use this in their lives to grow them into faithful men.

I think I mentioned that I have a book problem.  That being said, I have lots of books waiting to be read.  Lately I've been in such a book slump that I have started trying to read what I have laying around, "trying" being the operative word.  I've not been successful though, and was relieved that after a visit to the local library on Monday, this has changed.  I read a book in three hours that night.  I couldn't put it down if I tried, but I didn't want to try, so I kept just going.  I plan on spending the majority of today reading more.  I like to keep track of what I read, thanks to my sweet friend Andrea who gave me a pretty journal a few years ago, and the book I am currently on is book number 55 of 2019.  I'm way ahead of the goal I set to read more than I did in 2018...I think I'm already twenty five books ahead of how many I read in 2018.  My goal was to watch less Netflix/Hulu and to read more.

Last week I finished my last week of bible study that I've been doing on the book of Galatians.  A friend of mine wrote this study, and this was part one of the book, and I've been sad that it was over.  I'm looking for something to do for the remaining weeks of 2019.  I kinda prefer going verse by verse, but I am open to suggestions, if you have any.  I've got a couple of studies laying around that I've not yet done, but I don't know if I can go from slowly going verse by verse, to being spoon fed what other people have come up with.  I was browsing through Kay Arthur's website this morning, because that's what I'm leaning toward.  With that in mind, I think I'll stop right here and go do that some more.  Plus, laundry is calling my name.  And the grocery store.  I have to go there soon.

So thanks for reading!  Love to all.

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