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Less stress in just 2 minutes???

26 Jan


Happy New Year, beautiful girls!

Sorry it’s taken me so long to get on here and wish you a Happy 2014…We had a crazy start to our new year with being snowbound in another state and then, once home, battling the flu—TWICE! But life is back on track again now, thankfully!

Over the holidays, I watched a video in which the speaker shared some interesting research regarding body position and its effect on the body chemically. She gave a lot of information, but what I took away most was this:

 Body position can alter your body chemically, both positively and negatively.

This researcher found that the test groups members who (upon request) sat in a chair for two minutes making themselves physically small, close, and withdrawn:

1)    Did poorer in the job interview that immediately followed.

2)    Tested lower in testosterone (the get-it-done hormone) and higher in cortisol (the stress hormone)

The researcher also found that test group members who (again upon request) sat for two minutes with their arms raised in a victory pose:

1)     Did better in the job interview that immediately followed.

2)     Tested higher in testosterone (the get-it-done hormone) and lower in cortisol (the stress hormone)

She urged viewers to take just two minutes before important events (like a job interview, important test, etc.) and strike that victory pose. She is convinced it will make a real difference in the outcome.

Instantly, I thought of the different verses in the Bible that encourage us to raise our hands to our Heavenly Father.

Your unfailing love is better than life itself; how I praise you! I will praise you as long as I live, lifting up my hands to you in prayer. You satisfy me more than the richest feast. I will praise you with songs of joy. Psalm 63:3-5

God, come close. Come quickly! Open your ears—it’s my voice you’re hearing! Treat my prayer as sweet incense rising; my raised hands are my evening prayers.  Psalm 141:1-2

While we may think of worshipping God for who He is as benefitting us spiritually and emotionally, according to this research, it even helps our body work better! It actually reduces stress and equips us to succeed.

So let’s lift our hands to Him this year, even if for two minutes at a time, trusting Him to take care of our hearts, our minds, our bodies, and our dreams.

With God, nothing is impossible. And that victory pose is ours.

Believing with you for a great new year,


photo credit


The Letter

24 Dec

Hey, beautiful girls!
This post is actually one I wrote last fall, but it ties in to Christmas Eve and hopefully will be an encouragement to you as we all prepare for Christmas TOMORROW!!! Ahhhhh!!!!
May this Christmas remind you of what an amazing God we serve, that He loves you deeply and beautifully.
Merry Christmas!!!

Mr. Right Series Blog

I have to pinch myself that I’ve been married to my Mr. Right for 15 years now.

Even so, I remember what is was like to not have someone in my life, wondering if it would happen for me. I remember being on a continual roller coaster, enjoying the highs of It’s awesome trusting God for my love story!!! only to plummet into the depths of Why in the world is it taking so long? Is the right guy even out there???   It was easy to start comparing my experience with other women’s, to get discouraged (whether I was observing those who were still waiting like me or those who had already met their husbands). My poor mother! How many times did she say something encouraging to me only to have me roll my eyes and answer, Yeah, but you’re already married!

One day I realized something I…

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Grateful for You

28 Nov

Give & Take

Hey, beautiful girls!

Thinking of you this morning as we prepare for a day of family, friends, and some of our favorite foods.

Hope the words in the pic above encourage you to reflect past simply having a day off school or work. : )

May we all feel an overwhelming sense of reassurance and gratitude that God is ultimately in control, and He is taking care of us in both small and big ways.

I want you to know I’m very grateful for YOU being a part of my life via this blog!

Sending you much love this turkey Thursday…

Happy Thanksgiving!


(Thanks to Pinterest for this pic!)

Is Valentine’s Day for you???

8 Feb


So Valentine’s Day is coming next week, and for some of us, that makes us smile as we anticipate eating chocolate, going out, or watching cheesy Hallmark movies. Others of us may just roll our eyes and dread the holiday that seems to be for everybody else.

I read through various opinions on the possible origins of Valentine’s Day (some pretty crazy, some pretty sweet). Here’s an excerpt from an article I stumbled upon, written a year ago (2/14/12) by Barbara Biziou of the Huffington Post:

Another example of this comes from a legend. In the 3rd century, the Roman Emperor Claudius II thought marriage was not good for war since men wanted to stay home with their wives, so he outlawed marriage. At the time there was a Christian priest named Valentine who felt sorry for the couples and married people in secret. When Claudius found out, he threw Valentine in jail and executed him on Feb. 14. Before his death however, Valentine wrote a letter to the jailer’s daughter, who had become his friend and signed it from your Valentine.

I loved this legend because the focus was a little different from what we usually expect. It was about reaching out to a friend who had been there for you. Most of us can relate to that.

So this Valentine’s Day, be encouraged that if you have a friend, you have reason to celebrate! And best of all, Jesus is a friend who is always there for you.

Love you, beautiful girls!


photo credit

Happy New Year!

31 Dec


Today is New Year’s Eve, the last day of 2012!!! Can you believe it’s here already?!

Remember our Top Ten Things We WON’T Assume this year? Let’s review our list:

We will NOT assume:
10. We know it all.
9. We can read people perfectly.
8. We have to be like someone else.
7. We have to be perfect in front of others.
6. Adventures only happen to other people.
5. No now means no forever.
4. We either “made it” or we “didn’t.”
3. We have the pressure to make all the right choices FOR YEARS!
2. Our prayers are not being answered.
1. Dreams come easy.

Julia definitely appreciates that final point by the end of The Mr. Right Series.

As those of you who have read it know, she eventually breaks if off with Mr. Wrong in novel 1, finally meets her Mr. Right in novel 2, and falls deeply in love with him in novel 3. (Did you like her Mr. Right as much as I did? ; )

Julia assumes that now she has finally found the right guy, all her frustration and heartache is over, no more tears in sight. But during novel 3, she sees how dreams, the really important ones, often don’t come easy. We have to fight for them!

Tonight is New Year’s Eve, the biggest party night of the year. Like many people, we may go out to celebrate or simply wait up until midnight, turn on our TVs, and watch the ball drop in Times Square.

Why is there such excitement tonight? It’s the thought of a new beginning with 2013! Anything seems possible with hope and a new beginning.

That’s why people start writing their New Year Resolutions, ones like:

I will study harder at school, waste less time on Facebook, spend more real time  with friends, eat healthier, get in better shape, enjoy the moment more, do a  better job at work, make new friends, chase dreams…

Yet before we know it, vacation/holiday time is over, everyday routines and pressures resume, and life seems to return to normal. Oftentimes those resolutions we made are just too much work to keep, and they fall to the side (until we pick them up again next New Year’s Eve!)

But if we know up front that dreams don’t come easy, we’re emotionally prepared to fight for them! Like Julia, we see that they are worth the prayer, planning, and effort it takes to see them through.

Do you have dreams for this coming year? Don’t assume they will come easy. Be ready to make choices that aren’t always easy. Be prepared to be misunderstood by some. Anticipate it being inconvenient at times. You might even shed a few tears.

BUT always remember that your God-dreams are safe in your Savior’s hands, that He has a master plan bigger than you even realize right now. He will help you walk out His plan and even give you kisses from heaven along the way, great things you weren’t even expecting, because He’s that good!

Like Julia, you will see the faithfulness of God and that while dreams don’t always come easy, they are worth it all in the end when they come true.

Believing with you for great things in 2013! 

Happy New Year!!!
Lisa & Barbara

photo credit

Rock My World!

24 Dec


Today is Christmas Eve!!!! Have you taken a minute to read through the Christmas story yet?

Don’t you love the part with Mary? She was a teen like many of you reading this blog, but she wasn’t having fun off school for Christmas break. She was planning a wedding to her fiancé, Joseph!

Like most brides-to-be, Mary was probably full of expectations and hopes, planning the details of her wedding, dreaming about her special day, wondering what life would be like as a wife…Then an angel shows up and rocks her world! (Can you even imagine what that would be like, sitting somewhere by yourself, and suddenly an actual angel appears???)

This angel announces the amazing news that Mary has been chosen to be the mother of the Messiah. As a Jewish girl, Mary had probably grown up her whole life hearing that a Messiah was coming for the Jewish people—and that He would come through a virgin. That concept was not new to her.  Yet, when she hears this news, she responds with:

“But how can this happen? I am a virgin.” Luke 1:34

Again, Mary knew the Messiah would come through a virgin, but when it came to her own life, she had a hard time understanding how it could actually happen.

Sound familiar? Sometimes we hear other people’s stories of miracles or answered prayers, and we believe it can happen. We just don’t always believe it can happen for us!

You might believe that Christ came to earth to be the Savior of the world…But do you know that He did it for YOU?

You know that God says He’ll keep His promises, but do you know He will keep them to YOU? 

Because He will. God doesn’t play favorites, and if you will spend time with Him, praying, reading His Word, and crying out to Him, He will give you the love, strength, and guidance to live life. In fact, He will do amazing things in you, through you, and for you!! 

In verse 35, the angel explains how this miracle will happen and then reminds Mary:

Nothing is impossible with God! Luke 1:35

And that’s what I want to remind you today. The New Year is coming next week, and you might have hopes, dreams, and even fears about what 2013 holds. Be encouraged that God knows everything that lies ahead, and He will be with you every step of the way. In fact, He has special plans for you this coming year.

Mary was able to respond to God’s plan for her with, “I am the Lord’s servant. May everything you have said about me come true.”  Luke 1:38

Let’s choose to say the same thing as we finish out 2012 and move into the New Year together. In fact, like Mary, let’s let Him rock our world with His over-the-top love and wisdom. With God, amazing things lie ahead for each one of us!

Merry Christmas, girls!
Love you!

photo credit

Home for Christmas?

17 Dec

Two thousand years ago Jewish believers were anxiously looking for the coming of the Christ (their Messiah). According to their Holy Scriptures, He would be born of a virgin in the city of Bethlehem. They didn’t know the date; they only knew that His coming had been prophesied.

When the birth of God’s Son did take place, it wasn’t in the luxurious surroundings you would expect for the King of the Universe. Instead, He was born in a humble stable in that little town of Bethlehem. Even so, God the Father made sure that His Son’s arrival was properly celebrated by hanging a majestic star in the heavens for all to see—a star that had never before been visible in the night sky. Then He sent an angel to proclaim Christ’s birth to shepherds who were tending their flocks in the Bethlehem area. A host of angels joined them, giving glory to God. Later, wise men from the East saw His star and traveled a great distance to look upon the Christ child, bring Him gifts, and worship Him. What a celebration!

Christians all over the world continue to celebrate the birth of Jesus on December 25. Why? Because the angel’s message to the shepherds on that first Christmas was for all generations.

“. . .Don’t be afraid!” he said. “I bring you good news that will bring great joy to all people. The Savior—yes, the Messiah, the Lord—has been born today in Bethlehem, the city of David! Luke 2:10-11 (NLT)

Jesus came into the world to seek and to save lost humanity. Once we accept His death on the cross as the full payment for our sins, we are adopted into the family of God and guaranteed an eternal home in heaven. And like the Jews in Old Testament times, Christians are waiting and watching for Jesus to come again—only this time, He will not come to earth; we will meet Him in the air.

For the Lord himself will come down from heaven with a commanding shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trumpet call of God. First, the Christians who have died will rise from their graves. Then, together with them, we who are still alive and remain on the earth will be caught up in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. Then we will be with the Lord forever. I Thessalonians 4:16-17 (NLT)

I believe that Jesus will be coming soon to take us to our mansion in heaven. Perhaps, we’ll be home for Christmas this year. Wouldn’t that be the greatest gift ever? I cannot wait to stand in line to see Jesus. How about you?

Should we still be here on earth this Christmas, may your celebration of our Savior’s birth be blessed with special moments with family and friends.

Merry Christmas!



4 Dec


The holidays are now in full swing, and with them bring lots of emotions and introspection. What’s this season really all about? What’s really important in my life? What do I really value? Am I on track to seeing my dreams come true?

Because we all have dreams, big and small. Some of them seem so close, we can almost reach out and touch them. Others seems so far out of reach, we wonder if they will ever actually happen (like I talked about with my experience in last week’s post).

I want to encourage you today that God hears your prayers! Just because you may not see the answer yet, please don’t assume that your prayers are not being answered.

I praise your name for your unfailing love and faithfulness, for your promises are backed by all the honor of your name. As soon as I pray, you answer me; you encourage me by giving me strength. Psalm 138 :2b-3 (NLT)

Wow! As soon as we pray, God answers us! Yet oftentimes we look around and assume God hasn’t answered our prayers because there is no apparent change. But I promise you, God is working on your behalf in ways you cannot see, opening doors for you, preparing opportunities for you, moving key people into position, and preparing your own heart for what He has planned.

Though I am surrounded by troubles, you will protect me from the anger of my enemies. You reach out your hand, and the power of your right hand saves me. The Lord will work out his plans for my life—for your faithful love, O Lord, endures forever. Psalm 138:7-8 (NLT)

Let these Scriptures encourage you today! God will work out His plans for our lives as we continue to trust and move forward. And He loves to blow us away with His goodness!

Much love,

The Letter

27 Nov

I have to pinch myself that I’ve been married to my Mr. Right for 15 years now.

Even so, I remember what is was like to not have someone in my life, wondering if it would happen for me. I remember being on a continual roller coaster, enjoying the highs of It’s awesome trusting God for my love story!!! only to plummet into the depths of Why in the world is it taking so long? Is the right guy even out there???   It was easy to start comparing my experience with other women’s, to get discouraged (whether I was observing those who were still waiting like me or those who had already met their husbands). My poor mother! How many times did she say something encouraging to me only to have me roll my eyes and answer, Yeah, but you’re already married!

One day I realized something I had never considered before: my story had nothing to do with anyone else’s. It was between me and God, dependent on His character and my own faith that He would take care of my heart issues in His timing (whether or not I understood or liked it!) Inspired, I wrote out a bunch of Scriptures on index cards and taped them to my bedroom mirror. When I started to get down, I’d walk to that mirror and remind myself of God’s promises and faithfulness, despite my feelings at the time. That helped so much. Instead of fighting off discouraged feelings with powerless ideas (non-Biblical ones, I might add, like When you don’t want it, that’s when it comes! or other such nonsense well-meaning people would say), I fought feelings with truth. And the more I read those Scriptures aloud, the more I began to truly believe them.

Even so, one day I was especially disheartened. My dreams seemed so far away and out of reach. So I decided to do something to show my faith was bigger than my doubts: I wrote a letter to my children. (Yes, the ones I was still hoping to have one day. : ) I explained to them that I knew what it was like to have to fight for a dream, to have to believe when it looks like nothing is changing. I reminded them that the fact that they were reading this letter proved the faithfulness of God. Apparently, I had met and married their father just as I’d hoped and prayed for all those years. I then put that letter in my memory box, to save for them.

I relayed this story to my kids recently, and we ran to my memory box (which I’ve carefully transported from house to house through the years, as we’ve moved A LOT). Sure enough, there was my letter I had written so long ago, sealed up and ready for my kids if they come to me one day, discouraged about their own dreams. (That’s my letter in the pic above. I guess I was in a Spanish mood when I sealed the envelope. It says, “A letter for my precious children.”)

Why did I share this story today? Because I happened to notice the date on the outside of the envelope…I had written it on Christmas Eve.

And I was reminded that for some of you, the holidays are completely fun, festive, and full of joy! That’s awesome! But for others, the next few weeks may be filled with painful reminders that your dreams are still on the way.

Please take heart that your dreams are on the way! They are very special to God’s heart as you walk out His plan for your life. God cares about the anguish of your soul, and He will perfect that which concerns you! I pray that as you spend some special time in His presence this season (worshiping, reading His Word, and praying), you’ll receive all the love, peace, and strength you need to not only get through the holiday season, but actually enjoy it!

Love you much! You are in my prayers!



19 Nov

On Thursday, Americans from all walks of life will be observing one of our most important national holidays: Thanksgiving! Like me, are you looking forward to the traditional turkey, stuffing, and whipped-cream-topped pumpkin pie? Yum!

Yet this is more than just a day off of school or work, to simply enjoy feasting with family and friends. This is a day for every man, woman and child to pause and count their many blessings—and then thank the benevolent God Who made each one possible.

Have you ever looked up what thanksgiving means?

thanks·giv·ing  [thangks-giv-ing] noun

1. the act of giving thanks; grateful acknowledgment of benefits or favors, especially to God.

2. an expression of thanks, especially to God.

3. a public celebration in acknowledgment of divine favor or kindness.

4. a day set apart for giving thanks to God.

5. ( initial capital letter ) Thanksgiving Day.

This year, as we are enjoying the food and fun on this very special day, let’s remind each other that the most important part of the celebration is not the food or the fellowship. It’s thanking God from our hearts.

And now, just as you accepted Christ Jesus as your Lord, you must continue to follow him. Let your roots grow down into him, and let your lives be built on him. Then your faith will grow strong in the truth you were taught, and you will overflow with thankfulness. Colossians 2:6-7(NLT)

Happy Thanksgiving to all this Thursday!

Much love,

Barbara & Lisa

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