Travel Log - Post 2

One of the fun things about traveling is getting together with friends along the way. There is also the chance you will make new friends in your travels, so be open minded about new relationships when you are out and about. When you have a family with younger children it is easy to strike up a conversation with other families who also have kids. Your kids and their kids may even be playing together in the hotel pool, while you, your spouse and their parents soak in the hot tub and talk. Some of the time these friendships will continue long after your vacation, especially today with texting and Facebook. Other times these may be temporary, just while you are on vacation friendships, but they are friendships none-the-less. New faces will enrich your lives whether long term or short term. 

Lee and Dale

These are our good friends, Lee and Dale. We have stayed with them the past two nights and have had a wonderful time talking, laughing and eating. They have been the perfect host and hostess, opening their home and treating us like family. Even though we are not related, we are family. Lee and I became friends several years ago through work. She was the assistant manager and I was a sales clerk. When she retired, and moved south, we made a point of keeping in touch. Lee and Dale are forever friends and we hope to continue our friendship for as long as possible.

Mark and I finally feel relaxed and we are preparing to leave on the next part of our journey. I may not be able to post for a few days, so here are a couple of my other travel outfits:

white pants, striped crop top, navy tee
embellished crop top

This was my day two travel outfit. I styled my white crop pants with a navy tee, topped by a navy and white striped crop top. This top caught my eye at a thrift store due to the pretty, blingy embellishments. I personally do not have the abs for a crop top without a longer tee or tank underneath, but I like the effect this has. I have on my leopard print flats, but I swapped those out for a pair of navy blue Keds. They were in the "shoe bag" out in the car! Yes, ladies, I did bring a "shoe bag." A girl needs to have choices!

maxi skirt, orange tank

This was my day three outfit. This print maxi skirt is from Christopher and Banks. The orange tank top has fun brassy colored embellishments around the v-neck, so I added a brassy colored belt. I just have flip flops on my feet which you can't see. I was very comfy in this outfit, yet I think it looked nice. 

Today we are heading out to go to our campsite. I'll try to take some pictures along the way. Hope you all are enjoying these posts.

Have a great day. See you soon.

The Light of Renewal

Jesus told His disciples, "You are the light of the world..." see Matthew5:14-15. He was speaking to them about carrying His light, the light of the gospel to the world. You know I love the idea of layers and I believe our God is a God of infinite layers. There are all sorts of lights. There are candles, flashlights, floor lamps, lava lamps, table lamps, tea lights and decorative strings of lights with all manner of cute displays like R2D2 and Minions. It may sound redundant, but lights bring light to the darkness. 

Photo Credit  Rebecca Trumbull

Photo Credit Rebecca Trumbull

Life without light can be very difficult. Have you ever made the trip to the bathroom or downstairs in the middle of the night? Of course, most of us try to maneuver the darkness on our own. And what usually happens is a thump, followed by a string of curses intermixed with, "Who left that laying on the floor?" or "When did that chair get put there?" I know you all are smiling and nodding your heads. The simple truth is we need light. We would not be able to survive without it.

The thought I want to address today is not so much the light of the gospel for salvation, but the light of the gospel for encouragement. If we know Christ, we are lights, plain and simple. Some of us are candles and the glow we put off is soft and warm. Some of us are Mag Lights, pointing a piercing beam at specific things. Others of us are reading lamps. We stand by a comfy spot and give off a pleasant light that allows others to escape the harshness of the world. Still, there are others who are silly and lighthearted lights, much like a string of Minions who make their friends smile and laugh.

Photo Credit  Rebecca Trumbull

Photo Credit Rebecca Trumbull

What sort of light are you? What sort of light do you want to be? Are you like the Son, who gives light to all the earth, chasing the darkness from every corner? Are you a candle? A person who reassures others that they are there, warm and comforting. Are you a Mag Light? Do you lead your friends from the darkness of self-doubt and discouragement? Are you a lovely table lamp? Do you offer hospitality in your home by inviting your friends to dinner? Are you a comfy reading lamp, set off in a cozy corner who helps their friends feel loved  by having them over for snacks and a movie.

Jesus said we are the light of the world. He didn't say we are all to be candles or flash lights or high beams on a car. We are all different. The goal is to recognize what sort of light we are and allow God to use us in other's lives. If we don't allow our light to shine we will burn out.

Photo Credit  Rebecca Trumbull

Photo Credit Rebecca Trumbull

Renewal happens in our relationships with our friends as we allow God to use us in their lives to bring light. You may not be the one who brings your unsaved friend to the Lord, but you may be the light that welcomes him/her into your home. Or you may be the light that leads a friend out of a dark place. Let God show you what sort of light you can be and with His Spirit as your fuel you will never burn out.

True Friendship

True friendship is rare on earth. It means identifying with someone in thought, heart and spirit. The whole experience of life is designed to enable us to enter into this closest relationship with Jesus Christ.
— Oswald Chambers, My Utmost for His Highest - January 7th

How many people can you call your "true" friends? According to Oswald Chambers a true friend must meet three requirements (or have three layers).

1. We must identify with them in thought.

2. We must identify with them in heart

3. We must identify with them in spirit.

Being able to identify with someone in thought is a fairly superficial layer and relatively easy. We encounter many people with which we have commonalities. For instance, I am a Trekkie...meaning I am a fan of Star Trek, especially the original series with James T. Kirk, Spock and so on. I might have meaningful conversations with other Trekkies and enjoy spending time with other Trekkies, but that does not make us true friends. We have common thoughts about a certain show and the characters in that show.

Photo Credit: Rebecca Trumbull

Being able to identify with a person in heart is a layer below the surface. The heart is often a picture of our passions. This might include causes that we enjoy supporting, or political issues that we take a firm stand on. These areas of heart draw us together. The Right to Life Rally in Washington DC, draws bus loads of men and women who believe in the right of an unborn baby to live rather than be aborted. These friendships revolve around a passion of the heart.

The inner most layer and perhaps the cord that binds them all together is being able to identify with a person in spirit. The spirit was created by God. This part of us links us not only to each other, but to the Creator Himself. Having a common spirit adds a depth to friendship that the other two alone can not have. 

Our lives are filled with various layers of friendships. All of these are good, or at least they should be. Friendships that drag you down, suck the life out of you or cause you to do things that are dangerous or unhealthy are not friendships that identify with your thoughts, your heart or your spirit and most likely should not continue. 

And for those of you who have true friends, thank God for them. They are vessels used by Him to encourage us into the deeper layers of Jesus.