An Honest Account of Love, Grief and Walking With God
Finding God's Goodness in Life's Disappointments

Monday, June 24, 2013

Encouraging One Another

The Power of Encouragement
Kerrville Daily Times and Community Journal

Our encouragement can impact many
All of us have had things in our lives that have greatly impacted us, either in a positive or negative way. Studying month after month the phrase in scripture, one another, created a foundation in my life that I still try to live by today. The small group of 40-50 people I attended church with, learned weekly what scripture has to say about living and interacting with one another in our families, work place and our community. Eighty three times the phrase, one another, appears in the Bible. It instructs us how to interrelate to each other according to God. As I read this week and encountered various life experiences, one particular phrase stood out- encourage one another.

There seems to be a shortage of encouraging words in our society. Everyone needs encouragement to thrive. Some pretend they don’t need it, but all of us need cheerleaders in our lives. Encouraging words keep us going in the right direction, help us persevere   through tough times, and motivate us to go beyond what we think we can accomplish. I know this is true from personal experience.

2 Corinthians 13:11 says,“Finally, brothers and sisters, rejoice! Strive for full restoration, encourage one another, be of one mind, live in peace. And the God of love and peace will be with you.”(NIV) Think for a minute about those in your life you like to be around the most. Why do you like being around them? Could it be that they encourage you and you feel energized and strengthened by being around them? I love being around those that bless me with their words of encouragement. I never would have considered writing  if I had not had numerous people encourage me. This scripture also says that we receive a blessing when we encourage others. God loves unity and when His kids build one another up, instead of tear one another down.
Encouraging family
Hebrews 10:24 states “And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds.” (NIV) The word encourage means, to give support, confidence  or hope to someone. Our words are powerful.  They can motivate others and pour strength into them to continue when they want to quit. Think about the purpose of a pep rally. It is to draw the team and fans together to get fired up about beating their opponent. Do your words inspire others? 
1 Thessalonians 5:11 instructs us by saying, “Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.”(NIV) God’s heart is for us to be one another’s cheerleaders. Encouragement breeds courage. Often times, others see our potential before we do. Let encouraging words constantly flow from your mouth to build others up. We all encounter difficulties and discouraging circumstances and I know personally, encouraging words keep me going when times are tough. Our words can either build or tear down. It is just that simple.
Grateful for my friends that encourage me
This past week, experienced another death in our family. This time it was a cousin. I am a strong woman, however, I have experienced numerous losses of loved ones in the recent months and years. It has been a season where the landscape of our family has changed dramatically. Our family does not look anything like it did in family pictures several years ago. I am forever grateful for those God has put in my life to love me and cheer me on in this season of losing significant people in my life. Often times, we never know what someone around us is going through. Therefore, we always need to look for the words that encourage people.
Hebrews 3:13 shows us how often we should encourage those in our lives. “But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called “Today,” so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness.” (NIV) I had someone this week contact me and seek advise about something. I believe this person knew what to do in the situation, they just needed some encouragement to keep on the right path. As I sat at my desk and listened to them and God, I realized they just needed someone to lean over the balcony of their life and cheer them on because life was tough. 
Years ago, I was in a difficult season of my life. I went out for a jog and began to pray as I slowly moved my body down the street. Tears began to stream down my face and I felt like I could not go another step. I suddenly had this picture of me falling down in the dirt face down and laying there. Then all of a sudden, I saw my grandparents, who were very important in my life and deceased. They were leaning over the balcony of heaven, yelling at me, “Get up, come on, you can do it.” I knew God was encouraging me to not quit. 
I want to challenge you today to put a deposit into someones emotional bank account and encourage them. Let’s do it in our families, work place, church, and community. Be a blessing to those around you with your attitude and words. Be someones cheerleader today. Ask God to open your eyes to those around you, even those you don’t know that need you to inspire them. Will you join me in encouraging one another?
Kathleen is a native of the Hill Country and is a writer and speaker. She is passionate about helping people discover their value and worth. She can be heard on Sunday mornings from 8:00 am to 9:00 am on The REV FM, 94.3. Contact her at kathleenmaxwell1@gmail.com or visit her blog on www.themaxwellminutes.blogspot.com


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Sunday, June 16, 2013

Father's Day Tribute

It is Father's Day and I must admit, I miss my dad. He was a great daddy and we became very close the last few years. I am grateful for a good father...not a perfect man but a great man that loved me well.
Father's Day last year...2012

What a great grandfather to my kids...last photo...Christmas 2012
 

My daddy wanted to give me away ...
Joe Maxwell...a great father and husband
Stephen Rambie- A Wonderful Addition to our Family
Ready to be grandparents...excited about our lives together and all our children.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Days of Our Lives

Days of Our Lives

A painting of my mom and dad we found in the attic




The days of our lives are filled with much diversity- work, cleaning out my folk's home, estate responsibilities, and fun with our kids. At times, I still cannot believe Mom and Dad are gone from my life. They have been such a daily part of my life for the majority of my life. There were many days, the last few years of care giving, that I literally did not think I could take another day of balancing work, managing caregivers, doctors visit, medication, and building a new life for myself. The fact that I have, makes me smile as I have discovered that I am stronger than I ever imagined and God's grace is amazing. Yes, I am still exhausted from the years of serving but I smile knowing I loved them well.
Enjoying the lake with my daughter!


There has been much to attend to since my parents have been gone. The paper work, phone calls, listing the house are just a few of the things I have worked on. My sibling and I have worked at least once a weekend and sometimes twice a month going through the house, all the file cabinets, closets,  drawers, the house and the garage. To describe the garage, let's just say a car has not been parked in there for over several decades. It took several weekends with all three of us  working to get through just the garage. Finally, this past weekend, we were ready for the estate sale. It was hard walking in and out of each room of the house as it was filled with things that brought back memories of the last 50 years of my life. My doll bed, old  red record player, tap shoes, were just a few of the memories I reflected on. The sale went well and they are going to continue it again this next weekend.

Celebrating Stephen's daughter and my new daughter's birthday
Stephen and I spent Memorial Day with our kids fishing. We had a blast visiting with our kids and I loved feeling my grand baby move in my daughters tummy. Our family has seemed to blend well and I thank God for how He has worked in all our kids hearts. We are very proud of how they have handled our marriage and accepting each of us as part of the family.



 Stephen and I have now been married seven months now. I wouldn't say our lives are settled in any way but we have a good time and laugh a lot. He has been wonderful and supportive to me and I have loved doing new things, like fishing, with him. We are both spontaneous and that has been a lot of fun. Neither of our lives look like they use to and we bloom where we are planted. Sometimes that is in Uvalde and most of the time it is in Kerrville. The road has been a little rougher than we planned, losing  both of my parents right after we married but we have found beauty in the midsts of it.



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