Authenticity, Relationship, Trusting God

Normal: Being Honest About Our Hearts

Moon hanging over a frozen pond-there is peace in a sense of normal, but there are dark times when there is no sense of normal

@JeanneTakenaka

Can I be honest and say I’m missing my “normal?” 

Normal tends to keep us grounded. It offers a sense of rhythm to our days, our lives, our spirits.

When “normal” is stripped away, as it has been recently, we’re forced to deal with the impact of that loss on our hearts. My normal defined my days. I knew what to expect. I gained a sense of achievement by accomplishing my tasks, by being on time to pick up the boys from school and then get them where they needed to be. 

Continue reading “Normal: Being Honest About Our Hearts”
Control, Fear, Perspective

Control: 4 Truths to Hold Onto in Uncertain Times

@JeanneTakenaka

Who knew a headline would set my heart to racing? “California Orders Lockdown for State’s 40 Million Residents.”

How long before other states follow California’s example?

I’m not a woman normally given to fear. And yet, with all the talk of the high toll on human life this virus has the potential to steal, my heart is on edge. With all the uncertainty of this time, my mind has trouble shutting off. I’m trying not to fear, and to trust the Lord. And the smallest happenings seem to amplify my feelings, unsettling my thoughts.

Continue reading “Control: 4 Truths to Hold Onto in Uncertain Times”
Faith, Fear, Perspective

Fear: We Always Have a Choice

Photo of an empty thoroughfare on a hoarfrost morning, emphasizes the emptiness

@JeanneTakenaka

First of all, I am so, so excited to share a free ebook I’ve created for newsletter subscribers. Want to learn more? Click this link.

*****

Have I mentioned that I. Don’t. Like. Change?

Life as we know it . . . 

Choir concerts

Church activities and services

Writing conferences

Work trips

Youth retreats

School (my kids’ spring break was extended to two weeks due to the virus)

And many other activities . . . 

Have come to a jarring halt. 

With the concerns about the latest virus, I’ve vacillated between fear, frustration, and resignation. I know there are fewer cases and deaths from the coronavirus than we normally see from Influenza. But, this virus has made national headlines for weeks. The numbers sound so ominous.

Continue reading “Fear: We Always Have a Choice”
Contentment, Fear, Perspective

Settle: 4 Thoughts for When We Want More

Picture of snow-covered mountains with rooftops in the foreground, settling for what we can get

@JeanneTakenaka

We’d no sooner lugged all our stuff into the hotel room and the boys were plugged into their devices. Hubs made some coffee, but I . . . I yearned to grab my camera and snap some pictures of the amazing mountain views across the highway. 

I walked up the road, my eyes riveted by the snow-covered peaks. I kept searching for the perfect angle, but always there were wires or buildings or cars making the scene less than what I wanted to convey. 

Continue reading “Settle: 4 Thoughts for When We Want More”
Faith, Fear, Perspective

Perspective: Six Thoughts for Overcoming Perfectionism

A yellow leaf, curled and spotted, showing imperfection amid a pile of brown leaves

@JeanneTakenaka

I have a love-hate relationship with perfectionism. I want to do things perfectly. I feel good when I do things perfectly, but I’m afraid I won’t be able to.

Too often, that fear has dictated how I do—or don’t do—important things. Too often, I’ve stuffed my brave into a small closet as fear declared I couldn’t do it.

Recently, I was trying to write my first email for a newsletter. The words wouldn’t come together. So, I organized electronic files. I watched snow drift outside my window. 

And I ignored the blank screen on my laptop.

Continue reading “Perspective: Six Thoughts for Overcoming Perfectionism”