artful living



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When life hands you a hornet’s nest... make art!

What do you do when things don’t work out as planned? When expectations or dreams are not fulfilled... people let you down... or when God, in His divine and loving providence allows you to feel the sting of this fallen world? Where do you go? How do you respond? Who do you turn to?

Personally, I have seen many varied responses to this question lived out, as I am sure, you have also, some good, that have proven deep hurt can be transformed by forgiveness or painful perseverance; and some not so good, the results of which has been disasterous.

If you would like to read about my personal “hornet’s nests” and how God divinely stepped in and gave me a “Special Helper” to allow me to deal with a higher than average number of trials, click HERE and read Chapter 9, Mama Mia! from Metamorphosis of a Soul.

Apart from divine intervention via prayer, Scripture reading, and supportive friends to bolster our hearts and spirits during trying times, I like to read inspiring stories about the heros of our faith-- the saints, the “overcomers”, and uplifting literature of courageous individuals who can help us face "come what may. “

“Iron is sharpened by iron; one person sharpens another.” Proverbs 27:17 states.

My favorite quote by Winston Churchill was engraved in stone and given to me by a dear friend during my time of troubles. It sits on my office desk: “If you’re going through hell, keep going!” By no means, stop there! Better days are ahead for those who trust and hope in God!

And my favorite poem by Rudyard Kipling (which, of course, equally applies to women!) is below. Why?

Because even Jesus Christ knew that there would be some of “those days”: ”I have told you this so that you might have peace in me. In the world you will have trouble, but take courage, I have conquered the world.” John 16:33

Dear Lord,

I have heard people say that You will never give someone more than she can bear, but I have learned that I can bear up only if I don’t go it ALONE! Thank You that Your word states that You will never “fail me nor forsake me” (Deuteronomy 31:6) and that You will always provide me with all that I need to endure the trial (1 Corinthians 10:13), if I stay connected to You, the life-giving Vine (John 15:5)! Please give me the grace to be able to withstand what ever comes my way, and with Your and the Blessed Mother’s help, not just to “endure it” but to flourish in and through it, to Your great glory.

I ask this in the Name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.

Amen.

'if' by rudyard kipling

If you can keep your head when all about you

Are losing theirs and blaming it on you,

If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,

But make allowance for their doubting too;

If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,

Or being lied about, don't deal in lies,

Or being hated, don't give way to hating,

And yet don't look too good, nor talk too wise:

If you can dream - and not make dreams your master,

If you can think - and not make thoughts your aim;

If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster

And treat those two impostors just the same;

If you can bear to hear the truth you've spoken

Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,

Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken,

And stoop and build 'em up with worn-out tools:

If you can make one heap of all your winnings

And risk it all on one turn of pitch-and-toss,

And lose, and start again at your beginnings

And never breathe a word about your loss;

If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew

To serve your turn long after they are gone,

And so hold on when there is nothing in you

Except the Will which says to them: "Hold on!"

If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,

Or walk with kings - nor lose the common touch,

If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you,

If all men count with you, but none too much;

If you can fill the unforgiving minute

With sixty seconds' worth of distance run,

Yours is the Earth and everything that's in it,

And - which is more - you'll be a Man, my son!

Rudyard Kipling (1865-1936)


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