Woman of Influence

Untitled

Have you ever wondered what life would be like if you weren’t here? How would the world be different if you were never born? How would the people you rubbed shoulders with today be different if you weren’t here?

These questions we’re asking need to be reworded.

How are others lives affected because I am here?

How is the world different because I was born? 

How were the people I rubbed shoulders with today made different because I live?

Influence is a powerful thing, where you don’t have to do or say anything. Being you just changes a situation.The dictionary defines influence as “the act or power of producing an effect without apparent exertion of force or direct exercise of command”. 

You might feel like you don’t have what it takes to make a huge difference in someone’s life. Words don’t flow easily and your tongue gets tied up when people shared difficult details with you. Influence doesn’t imply doing or saying anything drastic. Your very presence, and how you handle life can have sway. 

When we are fighting anxiousness and ask God to bring peace to our life, it isn’t for just our own benefit. The peace that you then take with you from the house to your child’s soccer game will soothe others. You can influence.

Convictions that you hold deep within your heart that you choose never to let go of, will become evident. Modesty, purity and self-respect are not just preached, they are modeled. You can influence.

Displaying kindness to a person who publicly belittles you, might be humbling, but it is not weak. God’s strength will be shown. You can influence.

Refusing to gossip can be awkward, but you will pass on the courage to not get involved to someone else. Sometime’s another woman is just waiting for someone to stand with her. You can influence.

You may feel that you have messed up too much to still have influence. Don’t be fooled, you have sway. Is it for good or evil?

Isaiah 15:19 promises a second chance at positive influence for those who turn to the Lord.

This is how the Lord responds:

“If you return to me, I will restore you so you can continue to serve me. If you speak good words rather than worthless ones, you will be my spokesman. You must influence them; do not let them influence you!

We must influence!

God, make us into women who are willing to lay down our own pride to influence others for you. Allow our very presence to make a change. Not that we live under the pressure of perfection, but that we live within the freedom of knowing that you’ll speak through our mistakes and achievements. Give us the courage to be leaders, not followers. Give us your eyes to see ourselves with the power and potential you filled us with. 

When we recognize our ability to influence, that’s when God can really move through us!

 

newsignature

The Cost of a Dream

Our quest for a house seems to have ended. Well, I realize I’ve said that before, but this time I actually think this one is going to work out. The house we are buying needs significant updates, but we’re excited about the project. This house has definite potential to be a beauty.

While at RONA today shopping for some new flooring, I decided to take a peak at the cabinets, since I am hoping to update our new kitchen eventually. The first kitchen I saw was absolutely gorgeous. I look at the price tag. This is what it said.

“This dream costs: $20,000”

I have to admit, I laughed out loud when I read the term “this dream”. Wow, if only all dreams simply came with a price tag we could work towards. 

I wandered around further. I came to a set of cabinets that weren’t nearly as beautiful, but they were definitely an improvement to the old ones.

“This dream costs: $1045.00”

Oh, that was an affordable dream.

How many people settle on a cheaper dream? How many people miss the Lord’s will for their lives by choosing a path that doesn’t cost them as much? They manage to get a look alike, knock off dream that doesn’t last. The rewards don’t pay out. The benefits end. The treasure is not eternal.

A little more patience, a little more discipline would have brought about the higher quality, more satisfying, reached dream.

I don’t want to look back and see a trail of shattered hopes, forgotten dreams and diluted passion. I want for my family and I to say, as Joshua did, “as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.” And whatever requests from the Lord come along with serving him, that we would have worked hard to see his will done on earth.

I love this quote from author, speaker and blogger Jon Acuff. My husband and I have referred to this quote often during this latest life transition.

You will work harder at something you love than something you like.
You will work harder than you have ever worked when you start chasing a dream.
You will hustle and grind and sweat and push and pull.
You will get up earlier and go to bed later. But that’s OK.
Joy is an incredible alarm clock. 

Lately I have felt like our dream of a life given fully to the Lord’s call costs a lot. And oh does it ever. No price tag can sum up the worth of a life.

Proverbs 20:23 says

Don’t trap yourself by making a rash promise to God and only later counting the cost.

There is definitely a cost. Once the Lord has spoken something into your heart, you will need to look at the sacrifice involved. Not to let fear enter, but to make sure that you are prepared to follow through.

But don’t begin until you count the cost. For who would begin construction of a building without first calculating the cost to see if there is enough money to finish it? (Luke 14:28)

For me tonight I spend one of my first evenings alone since getting married. I can count on one, maybe two hands how many times we’ve had individual plans after 6 p.m. There are going to be a lot more evenings by myself coming up. That is part of the cost of pursuing our dream.

Jesus isn’t asking us to put our marriage or family on the back burner, but part of the cost has been surrendering the arrangement of our lives. If we can’t spend all our evenings together, we have to find alternate times, since our dream and call from the Lord is also a strong marriage and family.

My dream to pursue writing through blogging and book writing has been simply simmering. At first our new schedule depressed me, but I am realizing that through God’s sovereign plan, he is also opening the doors for this dream to be put on full heat, as he gives me writing times in the evening.

May you have the strength and endurance you need to work towards the most extravagant dream God has given to you. Don’t settle on the cheaper, or the more economical. Go after the most beautifully adorned plan that the Lord has drawn up for you. I guarantee, you will have no regrets.

High Five For Friday!

Wow, has another week just flown by? I can’t pretend to have been desperate for Friday, since I didn’t even know what day of the week it was half the time the last seven days! I am excited to be heading into a weekend with my family celebrating my first Mother’s Day!

I am linking up with Lauren at From My Grey Desk Blog. Check out the other posts there!

1. I had coffee with my other sisters this week! If you don’t know the Bachtold girls you can get to know them here, since they were the winners of the celebrating family photo contest. They are such great friends, and I really enjoyed catching up with them, and having a bit of time out by myself!

2. Caleb was up for almost six hours during Sunday night/Monday morning. It was not fun. The good thing was that Andrew stayed home the next day to help me take him to the doctor and get some extra rest. We had very tired eyes that day!

3. On the day my husband stayed home, we killed a bit of time at the library after going to the doctor. I picked up some of my favourite time wasting magazines. This picture was from Tuesday evening when I got into bed at like 7 p.m. and read while Andrew put Caleb to bed. It was good break.

4. I was craving pasta salad this week and I made my first one. Ok, I know that’s lame, but I used to hate pasta salad. It was delicious! I am definitely going to make it again.

5. Apparently I had a good find at Value Village! I saw a skateboard and bought it for my husband (his was stolen a while ago). I paid ten dollars for it and I found it would be worth almost $200.00 brand new. Andrew’s already teaching Caleb!

Enjoy your weekend and Happy Mother’s Day!

High Five for Friday!

After missing three Fridays in a row, I am back to celebrate the weekend! We’ve had quite a full few weeks!

I’m linking up with Lauren @ From My Grey Desk Blog to bring you this H54F!

1. This past weekend we were celebrating my brother in law’s graduation from bible school! He now has his Bachelor in Biblical Studies. We’re very proud of him and enjoyed being there to celebrate!

2. Traveling up to the graduation was fun. Caleb did better than excepted and was super cute in Boston Pizza on the way up!

3. I discovered a new tea! Tetley Vanilla Bean Chai! It’s so delicious. One night I sat in bed and drank my tea, and it was so perfect after an exhausting day!

4. My little button and I went for a long walk yesterday. He fell asleep in the stroller (he was refusing to nap at home). He looked just like a little baby again. Then he woke up right after and got back to being busy. He looked so peaceful.

5. I’m almost done reading through the prayers in The Power of a Praying Wife and The Power of a Praying Parent! I have seen so many of the prayers answered, and I am going to continue using them as a guide for praying over my family. I feel like these books have really given me a framework to pray into things that I would have missed otherwise. God is so good!

I hope you enjoy your weekend!

High Five For Friday!

High Five for a long weekend Friday! My husband is home today since Good Friday is his day off over Easter weekend. I’m looking forward to relaxing and getting some spring organizing done!

I’m linking up with Lauren @ From My Grey Desk Blog. Head over there and read some other HF4F posts!

1. I am giving away two $5 Starbucks cards to celebrate my 100th Blog Post! I’m excited about this because I love my readers and treasure the time they spend hearing about my life. Have you entered yet? You can do so here

2. We woke up to the rain falling this morning. I love a rainy day every now and then. We rarely get rain where we live, it’s sun or snow! It reminds me of when my family lived on the West Coast. There’s something very sentimental about rain, especially when I know my whole family will be together and we can have a fun in-house day! Rain also reminds me of my favourite movie Pride & Prejudice (the one with Colin Firth and Jennifer Ehle), and I just want to get soaked walking down a street like this, to come home and drink tea by a fire and watch my favourite movie!

3. I went to a baby clothes/items sale this past week and found Caleb a Vancouver Canucks jersey (well there is some debate in our house as to whether it’s a jersey or a sweater)! I was pretty excited about it! 

4. Caleb is eating really well with a spoon! He loves trying to eat his food by himself now. It’s pretty cute!

5. The weather has been so nice this week, I’ve gone for a few walks to our nearby grocery store, met up with a friend who has a baby too and went walking. It feels so good to get outside after winter. Caleb is so excited about everything he sees. He just looks around going “Oooooo ohhhh, ahhhhh”

BONUS: #6. I am so happy that Jesus Christ rose from the dead and this weekend we get to celebrate his LIFE! Because of it I have hope, joy, peace, love and eternal life.

 

Happy Easter! Have a wonderful long weekend!

 

High Five For Friday!

Who’s excited for Friday? Today holds so much fun for me, and the start of the weekend with my family. We’re going to knock down our creaky garage after the fire, and begin the process of cleaning up our yard and getting it back to normal, or to the new normal!

I’m linking up with Lauren at From My Grey Desk Blog. Check out all the High Five For Friday posts, or link up yourself if you have a blog!

Here is my top five things from the week!

This Wednesday I put out my neck the morning I was to lead worship at an event. My husband got me into a Chiropractor, and I got an adjustment and was able to at least move the lower half of my body again. That night they prayed for me before I led worship, and I felt the healing power of God flow through my body. I had full movement while leading worship. Then yesterday I went back to my Chiropractor and he was astonished at how much better my neck was. He did one more adjustment and told me I didn’t have to come back the next day. I told him it was the combination of a great Chiropractor and the power of prayer! I’m so thankful that I serve a very real and alive God of hope, love and healing!

Monday we were having a rough day. Caleb seemed to be falling on everything and the tears were flowing in abundance! I called my husband up and he met us for lunch at McDonald’s in Wal-Mart after got our groceries. It was so much fun. Caleb was safely seated laughing in a high chair and I got to talk with an adult. Caleb then fell asleep on the way home and I got some work done for a couple of hours. A rough start to a day turned around to a great finish! I also pulled out a new toy that I had put away that kept him very entertained! 
Have you read The Power of a Praying Wife? I have started going through this book and praying the prayers over my marriage and my husband. I can’t tell you if it’s working already, but I believe that prayer works and I will see great things come from it. The prayers are so powerful and align fully with the Word of God. I can hardly get through them without crying. God has us in a season where we are really working through some things he’s brought up in our first couple years of marriage, and it is so exciting to see His power at work! 
Last week one of my points was my husband’s birthday, but it was just what we were going to do be doing. So here’s an update. It was wonderful! My surprise trip to the spa turned out awesome. We were hanging out at home and all of a sudden there was a knock at the door, Andrew opened it and there was my mom and sister! He was so confused. I told him they were here to watch Caleb and that I had a surprise. We left and he figured it out by the time we got on the highway. He was so excited! The rest of the day was nice too, but the highlight for me was definitely the mineral pool and alone time with my husband. Maybe it was more a gift for me then my husband? In this picture we had just finished running around playing laser tag, so I look a little sweaty! ha! The cake is a Oreo Buttercream Cake you can find here.
On Tuesday I wasn’t feeling well, so I had some alone time in my room after Caleb went to bed and Andrew taught our leadership class by himself. That wasn’t the high point. But during that time I got to listen to another episode of Focus on the Family Radio Theatre. I LOVE this! They have so many classics; Chronicles of Narnia, The Secret Garden, Ben Hur, Les Miserables, etc. They also have some original pieces, including one of my new favourite radio dramas The Father Gilbert Mysteries. You can listen to them online for free when you click here. Past episodes can be found in player that pops up to play  the currently featured episode. 

I am also excited to be selling sponsorship spots on my website (an opportunity to get you business or blog more known). Please email monica@myredandpurplelife.com for more information and pricing. This will include a button linking to your website and Sponsor Spotlight every couple of months.

Have a fabulous Friday and wonderful weekend with your family and friends! I can’t wait for mine to begin 🙂

Blessings,

High Five For Friday

This is a special Friday! March 23rd, my husband’s birthday! I can’t believe what the last year has held for us. Here is a picture from his birthday last year. I was seven months pregnant with Caleb. Wow, how different things are! I can’t wait to see where we are in another year, and I’m so happy I get to enjoy all the changes with Andrew. 

I’m linking up with Lauren at From My Grey Desk Blog.

We have had a crazy week and that is the perfect transition into my number one moment of the week!

1. Someone started our garage on fire on Wednesday morning around 2:00 a.m. and we were miraculously saved, and our house too! You can read about it in my blog post Fire! 

2. On Sunday my husband and I went out for supper before our marriage class. We went to Boston Pizza and I ate Thai Chicken Bites for the first time since having my son (I couldn’t handle that much spice while being pregnant). They were so delicious, and it was nice to go out with Andrew.

3. Like I said today is my husband’s birthday. I am surprising with him a day at the mineral pool spa forty-five minutes from here. (We’re leaving right after I post it, and he promised not to read this!). We’ve been wanting to go there for the day for a while, and after this week, I can’t wait!

4. I got some sweet deals at Value Village this week! You can read about them here. I love the thrill of finding great deals! Thrift store shopping is like a treasure hunt!

5. I’ve been really into English Breakfast Tea this week. I ran out of Irish BReakfast Tea so I’ve been drinking my other stuff, and it is also really yummy! 

Have a fabulous Friday and a wonderful weekend! Don’t take a minute with your loved ones for granted, we’re here for a purpose and each time I receive some new perspective, I am so challenged to love deeper.