Living With Gusto, Mimi's Messages

Tell Your Story!

 

 

Tell your story! Seriously, once you share the hard stuff, several things happen:
* it’s not as devastating because it’s no longer hidden
* you actually “hear” it as told to someone else and often make more sense of it
* your story helps someone
* you take away the paralyzing power of what happened to you, and find redemptive power in the telling
* you look back from a new perspective, perhaps more wisdom, or compassion for the person you were.

We don’t stay the same. Though your story may not change, how you respond to it can. You may gain insight. Or resolve.

I’ll tell you right now that I KNOW you have been through challenges, or hard times, or good times, and that you learned something to either NOT repeat again, or that helped you survive, or made life bearable.

Yes, my dear, you can glean from those things. AND, sometimes realizing that our story is valuable happens as we are just telling someone about something that happened in our life.

It doesn’t have to be big. It is usually just us living our lives, daily working through.

But, when we share those daily walks with another person, somehow it becomes even more real in the telling. We realize that we were (are) powerful and creative problem solvers, and so many other things.

And the person listening says that they are so glad to hear us tell it (our story),

or that they never thought of that,

or that it’s amazing to realize that they weren’t the only one…..

There is so much power in our stories, in our lives.

So, don’t be afraid to share your story. You will find others with chapters of the same. A kinship. A support.

And it matters.

Much love, Mimi 

Inspiration

Hallelujah!

 

 

Oh praise God we have a risen Savior!

There is no one like our God!

He is alive!

He rose from the dead and has redeemed our souls.

Hallelujah!

Praise and glory and honor are His alone!

Now THAT will preach!

Blessed Easter to y’all.

 

“All my life I have been called unworthy.

Named by the voice of my shame and regret.

But when I hear You whisper, “Child lift up your head”

I remember oh God, You’re not done with me yet.

I am redeemed, You set me free!

So I’ll shake off these heavy chains.

And wipe away every stain, now I’m not who I used to be.

I’ve got a new name, a new life, I’m not the same.

And a hope that will carry me home.”

Big Daddy Weave

Have a blessed Easter!

Passionista Mimi

 

Inspiration, Words To Help

Onion Layers

 So I saw this meme on the internet, and thought I’d comment about it.

And then God begins to peel the layers off and heal in between each so that your heart can once again love and receive love. 

It’s a real process, for sure. It takes time–for me, several decades.

It’s not a pleasant experience. At times you weep. But the freedom and healing are worth the work it takes to look inward, consider the wounds, allow God to stir up your emotions, and allow Him to have the things that wounded you. And to replace the wounding with healing.

He is the healer. He wants you whole and free from the bondage of those things that you carry, those things that cause you to feel wounded.

Hugs and love,

Passionista Mimi

Inspiration

Can We Trust God?

How do you know that someone is worthy of your trust? Most likely it’s because they have proven themselves to you: they are dependable, they have kept your secret, they are loyal and supportive of you.

It takes time, usually, to establish trust in someone. And a kind of “testing”. 

God knows that it isn’t easy for us to trust Him. We are weak-hearted and easily disappointed by people and the events in our lives. We are constantly being let down.

But God is faithful. He is trustworthy.

He cannot lie:

God is not a man that he should tell or act a lie.” Numbers23:19

He who is the Glory of Israel will not lie, nor will he change his mind, for he is not human that he should change his mind.” 1 Samuel 15:29

He does not change:

I the Lord do not change.” Malachi 3:6 

Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever.” Hebrews 13:8

There are so many scriptures that talk about God’s faithfulness. However, this is an area that often takes personal experience to believe, not just taking someone’s (or the Bible’s) word for it. God’s faithfulness is proven during the course of our life, through provision or protection, and especially deliverance. To me, that one is the first and best proof of His love and faithfulness.

He delivers us:

“If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.”1 John 1:9

We can have absolute confidence that God forgives us. If he couldn’t he wouldn’t be God. Perhaps it takes faith for you to believe that. But let me say that I have experienced His forgiveness, the cleansing of my heart, and the outpouring of his love. It’s not all in my head. It’s a precious way of life that brings me joy.

As far as God’s proving his faithfulness?

He shouldn’t have to because he is God and God is faithful. Period. But yet he does. Over and over to us. There have been times when I don’t even realize he delivered or provided or protected until years later. And when I have those “ah ha” moments it’s pretty incredible.

I think, “Oh that’s what was going on behind the scenes. That is what God was doing!” And my heart fills with gratitude and praise. There are many instances in our lives like this (for example, when I didn’t marry the person who turned out to be of questionable character). We don’t even realize that God has touched a moment in our lives and taken care of something for us. Or sometimes we DO! Like when I was able to pass between two cars that were destined to collide at an intersection. Whew! I praised God for sure while I was shaking in my boots!

You CAN put your trust in God.

“Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.” James 1:17 

I hope you will risk it. Try him out and see if he doesn’t prove himself to you. I dare ya!

 

Keepin' It Real

Your Mission Should You Choose To Accept It

 

It’s my firm belief that our society could use a lot more attention. Not the “hey, look at me” kind of attention, but the kind that notices others. Attention to others: kindness, caring, listening, looking, touching, smiling, and sharing.

Of course, in order for this to happen we’d need to lift our faces from our device screens. If you know that I am someone who sits in front of a computer many hours a day, this statement could seem hypocritical. However, I make my beyond-the-screen moments really count. Balance. That is what’s needed. I’m a relationship-builder and I notice people. It’s not that hard, really, to actually look at folks. Study them. Listen. But also, respond.

It seems that so much of our society has “acquired self-centeredness”, to coin a phrase for my purposes here. Though most of us are not typically wired from birth to be self-absorbed for all of our lives (usually humans reach an age where they outgrow this for the most part), it seems to have become an increasingly consistent trait through adulthood.

Which is truly sad. Think back. I know you can remember a time when someone’s smile, touch on the arm, or hug reached your hurting heart for a moment. You were strengthened by having someone connect with you and share your burden.

Why is it often the norm to step back from other’s emotional journeys, whether good or bad?  Is it because we feel that our own journey stinks so badly that we want no part of more emotionality? But isn’t it possible that when we reach out to someone they could actually help share our journey too? Ahhh, but we must become vulnerable and make the first move. Whew, not many of us like that word! Nope, not us. We want our backs covered. Better yet, let’s stand in a corner with our shield in front of us and our helmet on so no one can penetrate.

But this is not living fully! And how, may I ask, are we going to have a fulfilling job with people, satisfying relationships with loved ones, or success in building a life if we choose not to relate wholeheartedly with others? How, if instead we cocoon ourselves away from interactions, connections, and reaching out with our hearts in compassion? Because, remember, we need that just as badly.

“No man is an island, entire of itself.” John Donne

If you spend some time becoming acquainted with people who have long-term, successful marriages/relationships, or who are making an impact on their world, or are top entrepreneurs, or leaders in their companies, you will most likely find they have two common characteristics:

Brenѐ Brown, in her book Rising Strong, says that

“hiding out, pretending, and armoring up against vulnerability

are killing us: killing our spirits, our hopes, our potential, our creativity,

our ability to lead, our love, our faith, and our joy.”

And then what is left of our lives?

 When we brace ourselves against reaching out to fellow humans, or fail to look into people’s eyes and actually talk with them, we are killing our own spirits. By our actions, or lack thereof, we are sending the message that other people are not worthy of our time or valuable enough to be noticed and we are way more important than anyone else in our sphere. Is this the impression we want to give? Is that really how we want to live our lives?

Every time I choose to become vulnerable and speak with people—online, in person, or to a group—and share the stories of my personal experiences of loss and then living, of how I broke free of a life driven by other people’s opinions and expectations, of my own rising above setbacks and circumstances, I am amazed. I am encouraged and heartened by the lives touched, hope that is received and embraced, and the new paths chosen. That is what happens when we connect, when we tell our stories in order to lift another, when we reach out with our hearts to let someone know that we see their pain, understand a little, or share how we survived. And every time I do, my own life gets stronger through lifting their burden during that poignant encounter.

We are placed on earth for others—to share journeys side by side. We are not created to be self-contained, excluding others. Thus, when we extend beyond ourselves, touching hearts and sharing burdens, our own hearts grow stronger.

“Go out and make a difference in your community. You don’t need endless time and perfect conditions. Do it now. Do it today. Do it for twenty minutes and watch your heart start beating.”

Barbara Sher

Hopefully my own bold choices will affect and inspire others to step out, risk, and make brave choices too. But what about the ways YOU have been courageous? The fact you are human means you have survived difficult circumstances, walked through grief and loss, suffered betrayal, endured your share of heartbreak, and yet have been brave, valiant, and bold (if not you wouldn’t be reading this). So tell your story, and shine your light for others.

Do you realize that you already make a difference in the lives of people every single day? It’s your choice whether you are adding value or not.

Will you smile and warm the eyes of that person you squeeze past in your rush to accomplish your errand?

Will you hug, hold, or touch the person who is alone and hasn’t felt human warmth in many weeks?

Will you visit the one who is physically trapped inside a home, longing to see the sunshine and feel the breeze, and to hear another person’s voice?

Will you listen with stillness, full intention, and focus as someone, with stuttering breath, reveals their story of need?

Will you sit, in the moment, with grief and pain, and breathe alongside another to divide the burden?

Will you whirl and dance in steps of celebration of another’s blessing without asking “why not me, when’s my turn”?

Will you hold the young child of a friend who needs to go, do, be “not-a-mommy” for a bit?

Will you take the time to write and mail a note expressing gratitude toward someone who has given their time and heart? There are many, many unsung heroes in our lives.

Will you share from your bounty, or maybe from your just-enough, to lighten the despair of another who is hungry and afraid, unable to feed her child?

Will you share from your buy-a-coffee-on-the-way stash in order to diminish the lack of another?

Will you call someone and personally voice your desire to help, so they hear the warmth of your humanness instead of just reading a text?

Add value to other’s lives.

“The question is not ‘Can you make a difference?’ You already do make a difference. It’s just a matter of what kind of difference you want to make during your life on this planet.”

Julia Butterfly Hill

As mentioned, the word “WHOLEHEARTED” has gained attention because of Brenѐ Brown’s books The Gifts of Imperfection, Daring Greatly, and Rising Strong. She so wonderfully voices for us the need to live with our whole hearts in a sincere, unreserved, and unconditional way. Why? Because those who do choose to live wholeheartedly experience longer-lasting relationships, more success in their work, and the highest satisfaction with their lives.

When we connect with another person through acts that add value to their lives, we live wholeheartedly. You do become vulnerable when you live like that, and must be brave to choose it. However,

It’s impossible to add value to someone’s life

without also adding value to your own.

This is your mission. Will you choose to accept it?

Thank you so much for visiting!

I hope you have a great week!

Passionista Mimi

Inspiration, Quotes

Anxiety Quote

I like how The Passion Bible translates this…

“Whenever my busy thoughts were out of control,

the soothing comfort of your presence

calmed me down and overwhelmed me with delight.”

I’d much rather be overwhelmed with God’s presence filling me with delight than anxious thoughts.

It’s so amazing that He invites us to give all that stuff to Him to take care of. And in exchange? He gives us comfort and peace.

When I can stop the busy thoughts spinning out of control, then I can hear God’s direction for the next step. And that’s what I need.

Thank you for stopping by!

Blessings,

Passionista Mimi

Inspiration, Mimi's Messages

Focus On The Light

 

focus on his light

From the book Indestructible by Blake Healy, these sentences really grabbed my attention:

“The enemy is fighting to get you to see things his way because

a simple act can release a massive amount of God’s goodness,

leaving a mark that can last for generations.”

 

Satan does not want us to realize the power that is ours through Jesus!

When we act as “Jesus with skin on” to those around us,

reach out a hand to the hurting, 

when we pray in the mighty name of Jesus and foundations shake,

when we stop hatred and meanness,

when we cuddle a child in need of love……

the plans of the enemy are brought to a halt!

 

“There is no place on this earth that God has not

placed the potential for good.”

 

No place is so “dark” that the power of Jesus cannot break through and shed glorious light! Never give up on someone or a place or a situation!

 

“If we know that God is always ready to do good no matter where we are, then instead of fighting the darkness, we will focus on honoring the glory we see in others, perpetuating the light.”

 

Oh friend, He is waiting to do good. God doesn’t need us at all. But for some reason He chooses to use us as vessels of His light, love, and life. Never think that you are not enough to have an impact for God’s kingdom, or that your calling is too inconsequential or small. It matters! If God has put a niggle in your heart to do something then do it! The rest is up to Him. 

For instance, this blog is not bringing in money, nor do I want it to. I don’t have many who follow me or even read what I write. But I’ve had to come to grips with what my purpose really is. God told me to write, and I believe that those who are supposed to read these simple words do.

So what about you? Have you been hesitant to do something, thinking it doesn’t matter anyway? Hey, are YOU reading this? Then you know the power of one person shining their light. 

And by the way, there is no small act of kindness. It all matters. Just sayin’.

So keep reaching out, touching lives, praying, shining light!!

I’m with you,

Mimi

Inspiration, Keepin' It Real

11:11

There are many, many concerns on my mind these days. They kind of swirl around in the background as I go through my day. I’m not especially so worried that I can’t do all that I need to, but yes, this list is ever-prevalent, just a thought away from giving me stress if I allow it to.

I know that my ways are directed by the Lord. I know that He will provide for my needs and will accomplish all that He desires. I do turn my “list” over to Him. But some days the items on that list almost suffocate me.

Because God loves me and is concerned about my welfare and the condition of my brain, I believe He gives me signs to assure me that He is handling everything I’m concerned about. One of the ways He does this is by “helping” me to see the time of 11:11 on my clock.

For a long time now I’ve been seeing 11:11 on clocks around me (and my phone) and I believe it’s God telling me He loves me and that He is present in my life. I tell Him I love Him too whenever I see that time.

So these past two weeks I have been more concerned (stressed) than usual. The list continues to grow and things mount up. And guess what? For two nights in a row, no matter what my routine has been, when I crawled into bed and turned off the lamp, 11:11 was the time. God really does make me laugh!

I couldn’t have timed it. God is just saying that He is with me. His attention to, and providing of, the details that reassure me are precious acts of love. It’s such a sweet way of letting me know of His presence. He knows I love the visuals!

And then? The next morning I opened my Bible to read and it fell open to this verse I’d already underlined…

“Because you have delighted in Me as my great lover, I will answer your cry for help every time you pray.

And you will find and feel my presence even in your time of pressure and trouble.” 

Oh the timing of God’s hand in my life!!

 

Love and hugs, 

Passionista Mimi

Scripture quoted is Psalm 91:14-16 (excerpts) using The Passion Bible translation.

Comment below and tell me what YOU think the 11:11 on the clock means.

 

Inspiration, Keepin' It Real, Living With Gusto

Ever Feel Like You don’t Belong?

 

Most of my life I have felt left out, looked over, and that I didn’t really fit in or belong.

Some of this was because I moved so many times during my school years. I was always trying to fit into a new crowd of people who already had their cliques. And I was shy and anxious, which sure didn’t help my cause.

Being taller than the other students, and often the teachers, made me feel gangly and ugly and awkward. I was not in the least sports-oriented and was always chosen last in gym class teams. (I know a lot of you can relate to this one).

Unfortunately, perhaps from listening to lies or just my own family’s limitations, I had an attitude of jealousy when I saw other friends doing fun stuff or having opportunities that I did not. I felt looked over. I now know that wasn’t the case, just the situation, but it was another lie that plagued me.

All that background leads to why I love these verses so much!! I have a place, a home, where I am cherished and valued. I am picked first! I am the most popular! I am cherished!

Of course, you know that I am referring to my home with Jesus, my family with Abba Daddy God. Knowing how He regards me has totally changed how I see myself!

I know that to some of you I am old, so you may think I don’t know what you are going through. I also realize that I’ve been able to shake off the opinions of others and striving to please people to feel like I matter. Oh goodness, what glorious freedom! But it took years, years I say! I’ve walked where you walk.

Perhaps I didn’t have the social media influence that you have now, but that didn’t keep me from yearning to be like the popular girls. From desiring to be liked by the boys. From wishing I had clothes like the others wore. Or that we had enough money to do some of the things the other families did. Believe me, I had the kind of comparisons going on in my brain that you have now.

And I had all the deep feelings I described earlier. So really, I’m no different from most of you reading this. So….

take these words to heart. 

“To those who were rejected and not my people, I will say to them:
You are mine.’

And to those who were unloved, I will say,
You are my darling.’

In the place where they were told, ‘You are nobody,’

this will be the place where they will be renamed
Children of the living God.’”

Hosea 2:23 Passion Bible


Take heart, my dear friends. There is a place for you where

You are chosen! You are cherished! You belong!

All my love,

Passionista Mimi

Inspiration

Wrapped In His Heart

Guide me in Your truth and teach me,

For You are the God of my salvation;

For You (and only You) I wait (expectantly) all the day long.

Psalm 25:5 Amplified Bible

The Passion Bible translation has this footnote that knocked my socks off:

“The Hebrew word most commonly translated as “wait”, qavah, also means “to be tied together by twisting, to wrap tightly, to entwine”. This is a beautiful concept of waiting on God, not as something passive, but entwining our hearts with him and his purposes.”

Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance says “a primitive root; to bind together (perhaps by twisting)”.

So when I read this verse in the Passion Bible and it gave me the illustrative words,

“I have wrapped my heart into Yours”,

I was just swept away by the visual image these words presented.

Oh my, what better place to be but wrapped together into God’s heart?

THIS. This is what I desire. I want to be wrapped up in God’s heart. Especially when I am waiting for answers. To feel as He does. To love as He does. To know that I am in His heart, being held, as He prepares His answer. And to “know in my knower” how very much I am loved by Him.

How about you? Do these words resonate with you? Please do let me know!

And as always, I’m sending you love and big hugs!

Passionista Mimi