Category Archives: Inspiration

Choose life

Copyright 2016 by R.A. Robbins

This day I call the heavens and the earth as witnesses against you that I have set before you life and death, blessings and curses. Now choose life, so that you and your children may live.”  The Bible (NIV), Deuteronomy 30:19,  Accessed from Bible Gateway

Choices

Choices.  Which one is the best?  Which one do I want?  Just choose one.  I want both — don’t make me choose one.  I don’t want either — don’t make me choose one.  Sound familiar? These are the kind of thoughts we have all had while trying to make choices.

While we all enjoy having the freedom to make our own choices actually choosing can be difficult.  There are times we really wish someone else would choose for us.  But that rarely works out, does it?

So why can it be so difficult to choose?

Fear of making a mistake/fear of the consequences.  What if I make the wrong choice?  What if my choice just makes things worse?  Do I really want to be responsible?  Am I ready to live with my choice?

Both choices appear equally good.  In this case, we may wish we could have both.  Sometimes we can have both, like a scoop of ice cream on a piece of our cake.  Other times we really do have to choose just one good thing.

Both choices appear equally bad.  There just wasn’t a good choice.  People of all political persuasions were saying that after the last U.S. Presidential election.  When there doesn’t appear to be a good choice we can always regret the choice we did make — even if the choice was not to chose.  If you choose not to choose you are giving other people the right to choose for you.

Peer pressure.  It can be difficult to make a different choice than it appears everyone else is making.  This happens when we live differently than those around us as well as being the lone vote for or against something in a group decision.  Making choices can be lonely.  But sooner or later we all have to choose — something.

Please join us this month as we look at some of the choices we make and how we make them.  Feel free to leave your comments below.  Give us some tips on things you use to make the decision making process easier so everyone reading these articles could use them. I would love to get a discussion going about this.

Who Measures Up?

Image Copyright 2017 by R.A. Robbins

When it comes to the world’s idea of beauty, who really “measures up?”  Is it even possible when the picture of the “ideal body” is constantly changing?  Not to mention that ideas of beauty vary from culture to culture.

I was born in the late 1950’s so the picture of physical beauty I grew up with ranged from Marilyn Monroe to Twiggy to Christy Brinkley.  I also got a good dose of “stand up straight, don’t slouch” and practice walking with a book on my head for “good posture.”  Everyone was striving for “perfect”  36/24/36 measurements.

My mother did not feel good about her own appearance and transferred her concern about her own weight to concern about mine.  As a teenager I always felt fat.  I always felt ugly.  Now looking at pictures from that time I realize I wasn’t.

Growing up is difficult and adolescence is not for the faint of heart.  It is a wonder that we (and our parents) survived this time.  The awkwardness of trying to grow into changing bodies is something we do not realize will pass as it is happening to us.

The fresh faced beauty of a young teenage girl is amazing.  But how soon does the pressure begin to change some things and cover up others?  As a teenager I fought with my mother over wanting to wear makeup only to give it up completely in my 30’s.

I think it is important to remember that anyone can be a role model. A woman who is comfortable in her own skin and reveals her true inner beauty to the world can do more to help young women develop a healthy body image than all the supermodels in the world.

So the next time you are contemplating saying the words “I’m so fat” or “my nose is too big” or any other disparaging comments about your own body in front of your daughter stop and think.  Is this really how you want her to think about herself?

 

Dwell on the Beauty of Life

Flowers along the road
Copyright 2015 by R.A. Robbins

“Dwell on the beauty of life. Watch the stars, and see yourself running with them.” ― Marcus Aurelius, Meditations

The real beauty in life

Copyright 2016 by R.A. Robbins

“Walking in the mountains helps me unwind, but it also reminds me in a painful way that the real beauty in life is nature and animals, and that the human race, in all its arrogance, is intent on destroying it.” — Sylvie Guillem

True Beauty

Popular culture makes a big deal out of what it considers physical beauty.  Every day we are bombarded with messages that we are not thin enough, or too thin.  Our skin is too dark or too light. Our hair is too curly, or too straight.  Our eyes are the wrong color.  We are flooded with advertising for products guaranteed to “correct our flaws” and make us “beautiful.”  And those of us who do not measure up are bullied, shamed, and sometimes even physically attacked.  This is especially heartbreaking when it happens to children.

But I have news for you.  True beauty comes from within.  No one is ever more beautiful than when the light of God shines through them.

On this New Years Day let’s take a break from thinking about resolutions and how we want to change ourselves.   Let’s start 2020 thinking about true beauty.

You are the light of the world

Image Copyright 2017 by R.A. Robbins

14 “You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. 15 Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. 16 In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.”  — Jesus, Matthew 5:14-16 NIV Accessed from Bible Gateway

Jesus said “you are the light of the world.”  Yes, the light of God shines through you.  For too long we have focused on the birth, death and resurrection of Jesus and ignored the life in between.  By doing so we have missed the lessons Jesus came to teach us about how to live on this earth.  Don’t hide your light.  Let it shine!

I would like to wrap up our study of the life and teachings of Jesus with a final thought.

Christmas has come and gone. But this year don’t take the baby out of the manger and put him away till next year. Celebrate Christmas every minute of every day. Welcome the Christ presence into the world by living in conscious awareness of the presence of God within us all and following Jesus our great example by living his way of life and teachings.

Dig a Little Deeper:   How do you shine your light into the world?