Wisdom From The Animals: Day 13

giraffes

Wisdom From The Animals: Day 13

A giraffe’s markings on their coat are as individual as our fingerprints. This marking on the giraffe’s coat along with the small hump on their back led people to call them a camel-leopard which in turn led to their species name: camelopardalis. Giraffes don’t require much sleep. They only need 5-30 minutes of sleep in a day. They spend most of their day eating and they particularly like acacia tree leaves. Because of their height, they eat from the highest branches where few other animals can reach.

“Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things.” Colossians 3:1,2

Sometimes, I keep my focus solely on things that have no real value. I go for the low hanging fruit. Life is easier that way. But when I turn my eyes upward, my vision changes. My sight adjusts and I realize I need to reach for the top. Like a giraffe, I need to go for the good stuff at the top. I need to set my heart and my sight on things above and not down low. 

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To view all of my posts from the 31 Days Writing Challenge 2015: Wisdom From The Animals, click on the icon above. I hope you’ll come back to visit over and over again. I’d love for you to follow me on the blog or any of my other social media sites. Thanks! 

Blessings,

Mimi

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Wisdom From The Animals: Day 12

chimps

Wisdom From The Animals: Day 12

Chimpanzees share more than 98 percent of our genetic blueprint. They are very intelligent, can be trained to perform a variety of tasks, have opposable thumbs to help them grasp or grab things, and they use or make tools to get food. And surprisingly, a chimp named Ham was the first “American” in space. Ham was used to help test space travel for human astronauts. He orbited the Earth in 1961.

“For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.” Ephesians 2:10

Like chimpanzees, we were also given certain capabilities by God. Capabilities that are inherent to humans that help us perform tasks, make decisions, and other things. But in Christ, we have been given additional tools unique to each of us to perform and fulfill the work that He wants us to do. Our responsibility is to discover what that work is and do it.

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To view all of my posts from the 31 Days Writing Challenge 2015: Wisdom From The Animals, click on the icon above. I hope you’ll come back to visit over and over again. I’d love for you to follow me on the blog or any of my other social media sites. Thanks! 

Blessings,

Mimi

Wisdom From The Animals: Day 11

koala bear

Wisdom From The Animals: Day 11

Koalas are not really bears but are marsupials like the kangaroo. They generally sleep 18 to 22 hours a day and fill the rest of the day with eating and other activities. Koalas have learned that sleeping helps them conserve energy.

“Be still, and know I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.” Psalm 46:10

I’ve learned when I cease all of my activity and I am still before God, I place myself in a position to hear from Him and in a position to know who He is. Be still, conserve energy, and know God on this Sabbath day.

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To view all of my posts from the 31 Days Writing Challenge 2015: Wisdom From The Animals, click on the icon above. I hope you’ll come back to visit over and over again. I’d love for you to follow me on the blog or any of my other social media sites. Thanks! 

Blessings,

Mimi

Wisdom From The Animals: Day 9

pink and green bird

Wisdom From The Animals: Day 9

The Pink-headed fruit dove is only found in the Indonesian mountain forests of Bali, Sumatra, and Java. Being a child of the 1970-1980s preppy style, I’m rather fond of the pink and green combo. The whole preppy movement was about embracing classic styling in clothes, lifestyle and mindset. A person with status focused on being well connected, attaining a high income and a higher education. That focus translated into wearing particular labels of clothing, driving specific brand cars, and getting accepted into the It schools.

” A heart at peace gives life to the body but envy rots the bones.” Proverbs 14:30

When I was in high school, I sometimes wished that I had what others did. I wanted to fit in. I really needed those Sperry deck siders and Polo shirts. As I’ve grown older, I’d like to say that I don’t get envious but that would be a lie. I do find myself craving the it things of the moment. But I have learned that they don’t bring me lasting peace only an insatiable appetite for more. I find that I’m only content when my heart is satiated with God and my craving for worldly things made out of pink and green fabrics is in check.

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To view all of my posts from the 31 Days Writing Challenge 2015: Wisdom From The Animals, click on the icon above. I hope you’ll come back to visit over and over again. I’d love for you to follow me on the blog or any of my other social media sites. Thanks! 

Blessings,

Mimi

Wisdom From The Animals: Day 5

zebra cousin

Wisdom From The Animals: Day 5

An okapi ( pronounced oh-cop-ee) is closely related to the giraffe and is commonly called the forest giraffe even though some of the animal’s pattern markings resemble a zebra. Okapis live in the rain forest of central Africa. Scientists were unaware of their existence until 1900 because they are skittish by nature. I’m not very adept at mixing patterns but the okapi has hit the right blend. The okapis mixed patterning help disguise them in the wild from predators. 

Jesus called his twelve disciples to him one day and instructed them to preach, to heal the sick, to raise the dead, and to drive out demons among their fellow Israelites. As he sent them, he also instructed them to be on their guard because some would not be welcoming towards them.

“I am sending you out like sheep among wolves. Therefore be as shrewd as snakes and as innocent as doves.” Matthew 10:16

Just like the disciples, I am also called as a Christian to share the message of Jesus and care for others. I sometimes find myself though blending in too much to my surroundings. I can look too much like a zebra one day or act like a giraffe the next. Like the perfectly patterned okapi, I must strive to find the perfect balance that reflects Jesus everywhere I go.

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To view all of my posts from the 31 Days Writing Challenge 2015: Wisdom From The Animals, click on the icon above. I hope you’ll come back to visit over and over again. I’d love for you to follow me on the blog or any of my other social media sites. Thanks! 

Blessings,

Mimi

Wisdom From the Animals: Day 2

peacock

Wisdom From The Animals: Day 2

Are you familiar with the expression, proud as a peacock? Chaucer spun this turn of phrase in The Reeve’s Tale. The expression symbolizes vanity and pride; the kind of pride that makes you think you’re better than others. The male peacock unfurls his magnificent multicolored tail to attract a mate. He parades back and forth showing off his colors trying to entice the female. On occasion, I’ve been known to remark to my children when they were very proud of an accomplishment or proud of how they looked that they were struttin’ like a peacock. But a fine line exists between the type of pride that honors God and the type that doesn’t. I hate to admit it but being prideful is one of those issues that has reared its ugly head in my life at different times. Even hating to admit it shows the work I still need to do in this area. Our high and prideful opinions of ourselves should not be the clothing that we wear. In 1 Peter 3:3,4, Peter states,

“Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as braided hair and the wearing of gold jewelry and fine clothes. Instead, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight.” 1 Peter 3:3.4

Looking good is not the problem. We can be as magnificent as the peacock but if our insides aren’t pretty, no amount of pretty colors and feathers will make us pretty to God or others. I don’t want to be seen as someone who struts with vanity and pride like a peacock. Rather, I want to be viewed by God and others as someone who possesses the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit as the scripture states. My daughter has heard this statement from me many times but it holds true – “pretty is as pretty does.”

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To view all of my posts from the 31 Days Writing Challenge 2015: Wisdom From The Animals, click on the icon above. I hope you’ll come back to visit over and over again. I’d love for you to follow me on the blog or any of my other social media sites. Thanks! 

Blessings,

Mimi

 

Tidying the Nest

Hey!

Earlier in the summer amidst all of the clutter and chaos my house became after we began a renovation on an RV all summer (post to come), I looked around and thought, “This house is a disaster and as soon as the kids move out I’m purging all this stuff BIG time!” Technically, I might have actually said that statement out loud more than a few times. I think my receptors to words like clean, tidy, organized, and stress-free were heightened because I heard these words everywhere associated with Marie Kondo’s book. So, after much hype on blogs and GMA, I drank the koolaid and bought the book.

Ms. Kondo is touted as an organizer extraordinaire. She has developed a method of organizing called the KonMari method that has literally swept Japan’s households clean of clutter. Ms. Kondo describes her methods in detail throughout the book as well as sharing some of her personal history. All of that aside, I was underwhelmed by the book. I’ve read organizing books before, and just maybe I was hoping for a cleaning fairy wand, but I was disappointed.

What I did like about the book:

Her methods for folding are genius. I’m still working through the discarding of my clothes but I’m impressed so far. As a lifetime baller of socks, the idea for storing socks has really helped me save time and helped me to quickly get to the socks that I want. Also, the order and manner of discarding is unique. When I sorted my tops, for instance, the book instructs you to pile all of your tops from everywhere in the house (except the ones in the laundry) together to sort. Instead of room by room or closet by closet, she has you gather all of the like items into the same location before you discard. I found this idea easier than other methods and quicker. Lastly, Ms. Kondo states that the discard will take months. She’s right. Her approach is more comprehensive but I believe it will yield better results. This idea is obvious yet candidly refreshing.

 

What I did not like about the book:

Some of the practices that she would like you to incorporate as you are tidying are unrealistic and are perhaps better understood in a Japanese culture. I found some of them odd and off-putting. For instance, she suggests that you remove all of the contents from your purse each night, thank the purse for its service and allow it to rest for the evening before refilling the purse in the morning. Not going to happen here. Poor purse. She also requests that you verbally greet your home when you arrive and as you tidy your space and discard items that you thank the items for their service. Again, not for me. These practices are probably a reflection of her Shinto beliefs.

Ms. Kondo also shares parts of her personal history to explain her passion for organizing. I found most of these personal stories distracting to the book’s purpose. One story would’ve been sufficient instead of interspersed throughout the book. Perhaps, these personal insights would’ve been better suited to a memoir rather than a book on organizing. In addition, I also found the English translation glitchy at times. While the words were probably translated right, the overall gist was wonky in these places.

 

Ms. Kondo’s mantra to use while discarding is: Does it spark joy?  Overall, I’d say this book is a 2.5 stars joy out of 5 stars joy rating. I’m encouraged to use what I like from the book and discard the rest.

Blessings,

Mimi

So clean house! Make a clean sweep of malice and pretense, envy and hurtful talk. You’ve had a taste of God. Now, like infants at the breast, drink deep of God’s pure kindness. Then you’ll grow up mature and whole in God.” 1 Peter 2:1-3 The Message