Search

Life with Aunt Bubba

Words of Wisdom, Faith and Friendship

Crisis Time: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

Students spent the night at school.

Hundreds of cars flipped upside down or in ditches.

Hours upon hours to drive a few miles.

Yesterday, mid-Missouri got hit with a little ice storm. It took me nearly four hours to drive a total of 17 miles (work to school to retrieve my child, then school to home).

It was INSANE! I’ve never seen anything like this in Columbia before.

It’s times like this that bring out the best in people, or the absolute worst in people.

THE GOOD

  • Teachers and administrators stayed at schools for HOURS to keep kids calm and safe while they waited on busses or parents to arrive in order to get kids home. Some people even opened up their homes for students who couldn’t get home and gave them a safe place to spend the night.
  • A man who lives in the neighborhood across the road from me spent a lot of time salting a very steep hill so other people could get home to their loved ones. Many people had to leave their cars parked on the road (or in my driveway) and hike up an icy hill just to get home.
  • People praying for the safety of the road crew and emergency service personnel who risked their lives trying to serve their community.

THE BAD

  • The horribly impatient and rude drivers who did nothing to help the situation by insulting people who were trying to do their jobs.
  • The man who simply sat in his truck and watched the other man salt a hill, never once offering to help.
  • The people who assumed parents didn’t realize their kids weren’t home from school yet, or who couldn’t get to their children. Maybe they couldn’t? Maybe they were trying their best?
  • Possibly me, for even writing about the bad. 🙂

Yes, the City messed up. Yes, the school administrators probably should have called off school earlier or canceled it altogether, but give a little grace, people. These are tough decisions to make.

THE UGLY

  • More inclement weather is coming.
  • The temp is supposed to get down “bitter cold,” per the local news stations.
  • Did I mention a -15° wind chill?
  • BRR!

The Missouri Department of Transportation has been urging drivers all morning to avoid the roads. They are still icy. If you don’t need to get out, DON’T!  Not only are you risking your life, but you’re also risking the lives of the people in your community.

Sometimes, the worst situations bring out the very best in people.

Get on Santa’s nice list. If you find yourself in a position to help someone out, do it. You’ll be glad you did.

Aunt Bubba

 

 

“Seeing isn’t Believing, Believing is Seeing”

I love Christmas!

Some of my favorite things about Christmas include the songs, the nativity scenes, giving to those in need, and extended opportunities to spend time with family and friends.

The older I get, the more I try to focus on the real reason for the season and not so much the commercialized reason. It’s hard to convince some people of this though, especially when a lot of folks don’t have a growing relationship with Christ like I do. Now, I don’t have birthday party for Jesus or anything like that (maybe I should), but I love everything about this time of year.

Some people have a stronger belief in Santa than they do of Jesus. I’m not necessarily saying that you can’t believe in Santa (I’m 37 years old and still believe in the spirit of him), but if it’s so easy to believe in ‘ole St. Nick, why can’t you believe in Jesus, too?

They do have several things in common, for example:

  • They both have beards, one much whiter than the other.
  • They both were carpenters, one for toys.
  • They both show up unexpectedly. You never knew when Santa would show up, so your parents made you go to bed early on Christmas Eve.
  • They both know everything about you. Jesus knew us before we were born. Santa knows who is naughty or nice.
  • They command you to listen to your parents.
  • They both give gifts.

With that being said, what could the belief in Santa Clause possibly have in common with the belief, or lack thereof, in Jesus Christ? santa

“Just because you can’t see something, doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist.”

I love this quote from the movie The Santa Clause, and I found myself thinking of this movie, and my reason for comparing Jesus and Santa, when I read 1 Peter 1: 8-9, in my devotional this morning. It reads:

“Though you have not seen him, you love him. Though you do not now see him, you believe in him and rejoice with joy that is inexpressible and filled with glory, obtaining the outcome of your faith, the salvation of your souls.”

We keep the spirit of Santa alive in our children’s hearts by giving them hope that he really does exist. We can’t see him, but we love him. Heck, even as an adult, I know he doesn’t really exist, but the inexpressible joy I feel when I think about all the Christmas mornings I woke up as a kid elated with “gifts from Santa,” it makes me smile to this day.

This is the same for my hope and joy that Jesus Christ gives to me. Just because I can’t see Him, I love Him, and I know that He is there for me. The hope I have in Him restores my faith in Him, my belief in Him, and I rejoice with joy that is inexpressible and filled with glory.

This Christmas season, as you’re preparing your plans, I encourage you to consider putting Christ back into Christmas. It’s ok to celebrate with stockings and gifts, but don’t go overboard. Jesus really is the reason for the season.

Peace and blessing to you and yours,

Aunt Bubba

 

NEW Advice Column Starting Up

“Dear Aunt Bubba…I need some advice.”

Many times, friends and family ask me for advice. I think I’m a great advice giver, which is probably why people come to me when they need someone to talk to. I’m also a good listener and feel as though people can trust me to keep certain information confidential. I am good about being sensitive to certain things, but I also call it like it sometimes.

Enter Dear Aunt Bubba, my new advice column! If you or someone you know needs some advice, email me at dearauntbubba@gmail.com. I’m happy to help in any way I can!

If I feel our little Q&A session can help others, I’ll post it on the blog (don’t worry, all identifying information will stay confidential on the blog to protect all parties involved).

Aunt Bubba

“Let us love one another.”

Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love. This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. 10 This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins. 11 Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. 12 No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us. 13 This is how we know that we live in him and he in us: He has given us of his Spirit.”

The above scripture is from 1 John 4:7-13 (NIV). It is the scripture that stood out to me the most while reading my devotional and Bible this morning. While it should make me think about all the blessings in my life, it makes me think of all the horrible things going on in our world—the hate, the crime and all the people who could really use a whole lot of Jesus.

God is love.

God loves us.

We ought to love one another.

Today marks the first Sunday of Advent in the United States. While this traditionally marks the start of the Christian year, many of us use it to start the Christmas season in preparation for the birth of our Savior, Jesus Christ. As you prepare your holiday plans and pocket books this season, I’m challenging you to prepare your hearts for a season of love.

Love God. Love one another. As Ellen DeGeneres says, “be kind to each other.” Approach each day and each person in love. You never know what the other person is going through.

Peace and blessings to you this Christmas season!

Aunt Bubba

Photo from Picture Quotes.

 

How to Live an Uncommon Life

Merriam-Webster defines motivation as “the act or process of giving someone a reason for doing something : the act or process of motivating someone.”

Earlier this week, I had the opportunity to hear a motivational talk from Mizzou’s head wrestling coach Brian Smith.

He was AWESOME, and I definitely felt motivated after he was done.

Coach Smith talked about the importance of living an uncommon life and nine things we could do to live an uncommon life:

  1. Write or see your goals every day. I keep a list of my 2016 in my planner so I can see them.
  2. Have a daily to-do list. My best friend got me started on doing this over a year ago. It’s extremely helpful!
  3. Reflect or pray every day. I didn’t start doing this until a couple of years ago, but there aren’t many days where I don’t do this. It’s all about getting into a pattern.
  4. Tell someone from your past how they positively impacted your life. Maybe it’s a teacher, friend or relative.
  5. Try to meet someone you don’t know and get to know them. This might require many of us to step outside our comfort zone, but it’s probably good for us.
  6. Read every day. Some of the smartest people in the world read for at least 10 minutes a day. I try to start my day with scripture and read before bed every single night. I switch the types of books I read, too. I try to read something good for me then something fiction (usually murder-mystery).
  7. Get inspired. What inspires you? Maybe it’s music, the arts? Scripture?
  8. Do your best every day. I’m going to add make good choices to this, too.
  9. Be humble. Be kind. Be someone you can be proud of.

To some of us, these may seem like pretty common things to do, but I have to agree with the Coach. Not a lot of people make time to let someone from their past know how they impacted their life. How many of you read (for fun) on a daily basis?

I challenge you to live an uncommon life.

Aunt Bubba

Stop Begging and Start Thanking

Last week I traveled more than 1,000 miles across the state of Missouri to deliver exciting news to our agents about two new safety programs my company was rolling out soon. By the time I got home, I was exhausted, mentally and physically.

Yesterday, I drove to Kansas City. About 20 miles in to my 100 mile drive, I began listening to the Joel Osteen channel on XM radio. The podcast that I listened to going to KC would serve me well on my trip home from KC.

The sermon was about thanking God in advance instead of begging him to change things in your life, and it came at a very crucial time in my life.

When I heard Joel talk about thanking God instead of begging Him to do things for me, I was nodding my head “yes” in the car and slowly starting do that.

For the past several month, I’ve been in negotiations to sell my rental house. It’s been such a painful process and extremely stressful at times. I’ve said yes where I wanted to say no, I’ve cried and gotten angry with both my realtor and the buyer and I’ve laughed almost hysterically when I think to myself, “Of course of these things would happen to me and no one else.”

On my car ride home from KC yesterday, I started questioning some of the decisions/purchases I’ve made (including new furniture I purchased with my hard-earned bonus from work) and wondering how in the world I’m going to make all of this work without being completely broke and owing thousands of dollars for work on this rental house. Then, I remembered something from Joel’s podcast about thanking God in advance. Here’s a brief description of the podcast:

“The promises we stand on each day are like seeds. Most of the time, they don’t come to fruition overnight. There is a period of waiting and watering. In this message, Joel teaches you how to move forward and stay in faith instead of worrying during times of waiting. With verses like Romans 4:20, you will be encouraged as you see how Abraham grew strong in faith by giving praise to God and be inspired to do the same. As you praise God in advance, your “seeds of faith” will stay watered and you will be strengthened and encouraged on the way to victory.”

After getting two new estimates for things that needed to be fixed at my rental house, I had to pull over in Sweet Springs, have a little cry and talk to a friend to calm my down. He told me everything was going to be okay, and he was right.

When I got home, I wrote out all the numbers I needed to write out from the selling price of the house, to what I owed and how much I would spend on everything that needed to be fixed. I’m going to break even, almost exactly. I pray that it stays that way, and I’m thanking God for everything that He has blessed me with, not begging him to make this closing go through.

If you’re struggling with certain things in your life right now, I encourage you to seek comfort in God. He will bring joy and peace into to your life if you trust Him. Sometimes that’s hard to do, but it will all be worth it.

Aunt Bubba

Listen to the podcast here. Featured image from www.getpositive.today.

 

 

Returning the Service

Never in all my 36 years have I heard what I heard at dinner last night.

 

black-and-white-restaurant-eating-sitting

Photo from pexels.com

As my daughter and I sat down in our booth with my mom, a husband and wife entered the restaurant. You could tell they had never been there before because they didn’t know they could seat themselves. A waitress named Deanna, told them they could have a seat wherever they liked. They proceeded to sit in the booth behind us.

Our waitress came and took our order, then Deanna greeted the couple sitting behind us.

What the male customer said next to the waitress not only restored my faith in God, but touched my heart so much.

“Is there anything we can pray about for you when we bless our food?” the husband asked.

My ears immediately perked up and I listened intently for Deanna to respond. You could tell she was a little shocked to be asked this question, because there was silence for a few moments before she answered.

“You could pray for the health of my kids, and that they continue to stay healthy,” Deanna replied.

“We would love to pray for the health of your children,” the wife replied.

I knew immediately that God had placed us in this restaurant last night for a reason. The restaurant we really wanted to go to was closed for some reason, and after I overheard what I did, I knew we had picked the right place to eat.

I proceeded to get up and head towards the salad bar to make my salad, but before I did, I approached the couple and told them how inspired I was that they would offer to do that. The husband began to describe a service one of their pastors at Church on the Rock in St. Peters, MO had given about giving back to others. He also told me he would leave a big tip for Deanna in order to share some of the blessings God had bestowed upon him and his wife.

“You would be amazed to hear some of the stories people share with us,” the wife said. “One young man asked us to pray for the kidney transplant he was getting ready to have.”

I told them a little about Deanna, not because I know her well, but because she has worked at that restaurant for quite some time and used to live down the street from my rental property. She has three kids and ALWAYS has a smile on her face whenever mom and I would eat at that restaurant.

 

Serve the Lord with gladness. - Psalm 100:2
Serve the Lord with gladness. – Psalm 100:2

I’m so glad my daughter got to hear everything that happened last night, because it’s a prime example of not only giving back to others with what God has blessed you with, but also there are other Christians out there besides her mother, and we all believe in serving God and spreading his love.

I hope you, too, see this as an opportunity/reminder to spread the love of God and give back to others.

Aunt Bubba

Waiting Can Be Killer

Change is good, but for most people, change can also be scary. It’s new, it’s different, and it requires us to step outside our comfort zone.

Some of us have prayed and prayed to God and asked Him to bring some form of change into our lives.

“How much longer do I have to keeping, God?”

“When will you answer my prayers, God?”

If I sin, will God wait even longer to reveal these plans to me?

God knows his plans for you. In Jeremiah 29:11, it says:

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord,” plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”

Waiting can be gruesome. For me, waiting often leads to doubt in myself and sometimes, doubt in God’s plans. It’s times like these when I turn to the Bible. Trusting God can be difficult, especially when what we’re asking Him for is kind of a big deal.

Being patient with God can be even harder, but “waiting on God reveals our dependence on Him, it helps us shape our character and it builds patience into our lives.”

These three things I just listed were from last night’s service at my church, Woodcrest Chapel. The message was titled “Wait For It,” and it was a great reminder for what we could do we wait patiently for God to reveal his plans for us. It will be online in a couple f days if you want to check it out.

God  revealed his plans for me this past week. I recently accepted a new position at my company in a completely different department. It will be a challenging position, but these plans are His plans, and I know His plans will prosper me, so I trust God.

If reading scripture helps soothe your soul like it does mine, here are some of my favorites I like to read when times are tough or I need a spiritual pick me up.

Psalm 27:13-14
I remain confident of this: I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord.

Psalm 55:22
Cast your cares on the Lord and he will sustain you; he will never let the righteous be shaken.

Proverbs 3:5-7
Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.

Matthew 11:28-30
Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.

Romans 8:28
And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.

Have a great week, everyone!

Aunt Bubba

Easter then, Easter Now

When I was a little girl, Easter weekends were spent at Grandma Libby’s house in the thriving metropolis of Milan, MO. The Easter Bunny always did such a good job hiding baskets for my sister’s and I to hunt. Sometimes it was hard to go to sleep on Saturday night because we were so excited about getting up the  next morning.

On Sunday morning, we dressed in adorable little dresses and hats and headed to the United Methodist Church for the Easter Cantata.

Me, Grandma Libby, my sister
Me, Grandma Libby, my sister, Carrie.

The church was always decorated with white Easter lilies and purple tapestries on the walls and pulpit. Grandma Libby was the pianist at the church for over 40 years, and I’m pretty sure we sang the same songs every year. Some of my favorites were:

I’m honestly surprised I remember so many of these hymns, but listening to them again make me smile and remind me of Grandma Libby, who passed away in 2009.

After church, we headed back to Grandma’s house where Easter dinner magically was already done cooking. We  always included ham, mashed potatoes, corn, beets (bleh), jello with bing cherries and rolls. There was always an assortment of desserts, too.

Little did I know at the time, but God was working on my heart when I was a little girl. I wouldn’t fully understand what His love and His grace would mean until I was in my early 30s. Now that I have this relationship with Christ, and it continues to strengthen every day, I know it’s okay that I wasn’t open to a relationship with Him when I was a child.

Before I accepted Jesus Christ as my Savior, Easter used to be about the Easter Bunny, egg hunts and finding the perfect items for my daughter’s Easter basket. Don’t get me wrong, those things are still perfectly acceptable to do, but just like Christmas, Easter isn’t about the gifts. Easter means God gave us the ultimate gift when he sent his son, Jesus, to die on the cross for our sins.

For those of you who haven’t accepted Christ into your hearts, this isn’t meant to be some rant from some super religious person to get you to drink the Kool-Aid. Before my relationship with Christ, I was a path of destruction, spiritually, emotionally and physically. I wasn’t doing anything illegal, but I was really struggling with some things in my life. I felt like something was missing. I was afraid to trust God because I was afraid he was going to let me down. Now, I trust Him completely.

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”  — Jeremiah 29:11

He knows what my future holds, and it’s going to be so great!  I wake up seeing each day as a gift from Him. Why do I trust in God? How do I know He lives? Just like the hymn says, He lives within my heart.

I’m so blessed and so grateful for the peace, patience, love and joy that God continues to give me every day. I hope you’ll allow Him to give you the same gift, too!

So tell me friends, what does Easter mean to you?

Aunt Bubba

Blog at WordPress.com.

Up ↑