Do you ever long for a quieter life?  A more fruitful life?  A joyful life?

 

Pansies and Primula Inspiration for Living with Intention this Summer - AnExtraordinaryDay.net

 

Do some days, weeks, maybe even months seem to breeze by?

Do you ever feel like those days are… not great… nothing special… just okay?

Are you tired of the ho-hum?  Do you want more?

The only way I know for us to have more quiet, fruit, and joy in our lives is to choose it.

We need to be purposeful.

Oh great!” you’re thinking.  “Just heap on my to-dos. Make me feel inadequate when I already don’t feel like I measure up.”

Actually, that isn’t my intention.

Summertime is a great time to reorient.

For me,  summer is the time when I strive to release some of my many self-imposed pressures.  If I want to enjoy the beauty of creation and the nearby beaches for the three brief months of summer… something has to give… choices need to be made.

 

Red tulips tinged in white - Inspirational devotional for summer living - AnExtraordinaryDay.net

 

If you sense any pressure from me today, it’s simply my encouragement to do a little self-assessment and ascertain if you’re comfortable staying on the “okay” path or if you would prefer to reset your “quadrants” or “navigational devices” for summer.

 

Gorgeous red and white tulips - Tips for How to Have a Great Summer - AnExtraordinaryDay.net

 

Recently I had a few little health issues that set me back.  In addition to visits with my natural healing practitioners, I decided that there were a few additional things that I needed to do to get back my health and energy.

For me, this has been a process.

The first thing I did was resign from the responsibilities of my part-time job.  I didn’t give the usual 2-week notice.  It was an open-ended resignation that went on for several months.  One day, I sensed I needed to be done on June 1st, so Friday the first was my last day.  Maybe I should have given a firm date in the beginning, regardless, I finally followed through on what I knew I needed to do.

Another thing I have done is give myself permission to “sleep in.”  Some nights I sleep poorly and then get up like normal to start my day.  Typically driven to have fully productive days, I am choosing to allow myself to stay in bed.  Sometimes I doze… many times I just quietly lie in my bed and pray.  Whether I sleep or not, my body is receiving additional rest.

When you work for yourself as I do, there are a multitude of tasks to accomplish in a day. Over time I started to prioritize the “musts” over the “shoulds.”  And over time there became fewer of both.

You probably noticed that I haven’t been publishing as many posts.  In a couple of instances, I re-wrote or polished a few old posts that didn’t get much traction originally and added new photos.  It was a double win for the blog and for me.  The funny thing is that I didn’t remember those old posts (I have well over 1,000 published posts!) before I updated them, and I bet you wouldn’t have either.

This reduced publishing schedule gave me breathing space which I didn’t realize I so badly needed.

With low energy and malaise, my creativity has been at a low, so taking off the pressure to come up with new creative ideas was a big deal.  It has allowed me to relax a bit and hopefully, I’ll see a resurgence of creativity, soon.

If this sounds like I’ve made this “reset” all about me, I can assure you it is not.

Daily I post spiritual inspiration on my Facebook page, along with whatever else I might like to share. I thoroughly enjoy the engagement there and I love that I can make a difference by encouraging whoever needs a little lift.  In real life, I’ve had some fun blessing friends by doing some unexpected things.  Tangibly loving others not only breathes life into my friends, but it’s benefited me in some very unexpected ways as well.

This may sound a little odd, but I also have been working at closing the lid on my laptop between 8:30 and 9:30 each night and watching a short, but funny DVD with my husband for the sole purpose of laughing, before getting ready for bed.  Proverbs 15:13 tells us, “A glad heart makes a happy face.” There is no doubt that I want a happy face and a happy heart, so this little routine is definitely a good one.

 

Stunning Red and white tulips - Make your summer purposeful by choice - AnExtraordinaryDay.net

 

Recently on Facebook, I reshared a little inspiration for living well.  The context of the post was around the idea that each of us is holding a cup.  Whenever life jostles us… for good or bad… whatever is in our cup splashes out on those around us.

That begs the question… What is in your cup?

Is your cup filled with busyness, bitterness, self-indulgence, anger, selfishness, fear, and harsh words?

Or… is it filled with the fruits of the Spirit… love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control?

We get to choose what we pour into our cups.

What is it you want filling up your cup?

 

English Daisies -- Faith Devotional -- This summer choose to live with intention - AnExtraordinaryDay.net

 

This summer… propose to slow down… to be purposeful with your heart and time.

Decide to be gentle with yourself and more loving with others.

Fill your time with quiet, laughter, contemplation, and friends… fill your soul with more of God and scripture and his creation… and splash your world with love, joy, goodness, and grace.

Slow your spirit and your summer… ride your bike, dip your toes in the waves, read, rest, laugh, and be restored with the goodness of God and his amazing creation.  And from all this good… pour yourself into those God wants you to love.

Keep in mind… all this goodness won’t just happen this summer… it’s up to you to make the choice to choose more.

What is the “more” you need to choose?

What will it take to make YOUR summer purposeful and joy-filled?

 

Plant textures in greens with English Daisies - JoyDay! on the blog - AnExtraordinaryDay.net

 

It’s Joy Day!

Let’s begin this week with gratitude and fill up our hearts with joy.

Please join me in thinking back over the past week and counting seven things for which you are thankful.  God’s word tells us that we are to give thanks in all things.  It’s an amazing exercise.

The best part of doing this….we get JOY!  And I just know you need some joy.

I’ll start…

Thank you, God for…

  1. the love that You keep lavishing on me.
  2. helping me pull off a fun getaway for a dear friend and her family.  My heart is so full because Your goodness, Lord.
  3. showing me in big and small ways how to live more fully and more joyfully.
  4. gorgeous flowers from the farmers market and at such a good price, too.
  5. a fun Saturday morning with my sweet friend.
  6. a wonderful teaching about our mouth and the power of the tongue.
  7. a walk along the shoreline this morning in the cool quiet with my love.

Now…it’s YOUR turn!

List your ‘seven’ in the ‘share your extraordinary thoughts’ section below.  You’ll be glad you did.

Thank you for stopping by and leaving your sweet thoughts.

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Comments

  1. Hope you find yourself feeling healthier and more energetic soon. Reading your post, it certainly sounds as if you are on a wonderful path toward it. My seven this week: 1. A fun, quick vacation with our family. 2. Getting to see Lake Superior (we went to Duluth) in person, breathtaking 3. A wonderful friend willing to come over and babysit our little gray cat each day we were gone 4. Not being bothered (too much) by our insane Midwest heat…100+ forecast for tomorrow 5. Air conditioning 😉 6. Time to relax between our vacation and the week ahead 7. Books

  2. Happy Joy Day!
    So sorry to hear that you have not been feeling your best.
    Also to hear about sleeping troubles. I share this problem with you. Since hubby no longer works and our kids are grown I decided I am not allowed to get out of bed before 8:00. (Of course that changes if we have a doctor appointment or something like that). I was like you, not getting much sleep and then I’d wake up at 5:30 or 6:00 and get out of bed because that was the time I would get up since I was 5 years old. Now sometimes I’m even able to go back to sleep. Sometimes not…can’t have everything.
    Lord I thank you for,
    1. The peace you give me
    2. The lovely sounds of summer
    3. The love of family
    4. Extra rest in the morning
    5. Happy dog barks and kisses
    6. The fun we all had on Saturday
    7. The fact that I always see beauty in the simple things
    Blessings to you!
    Minnie
    Oh…forgot this…In my cup is Peace. Always I choose Peace

  3. Lucy Beliveau says:

    Dear Diane, I thoroughly enjoyed this post today! I’m very concerned about your poor health and certainly would liked to be helpful in getting you better. You mean a lot to me and I don’t like for you to be ill.

    Lord, I am grateful to you for…

    1. The beautiful days we had lately. Sunshine and 65 degree have spoiled me!!’
    2. The strength you’ve given me to help Guy get some packing done!
    3. Two precious brothers who I get to talk with every single day!! Love you guys!!!
    4. My brother’s generous birthday gift and house warming gift!
    5. My Dear Children who are making all of their dreams come true!
    6. My new joy-splashing adventure!
    7. My nice cozy bed!!!

  4. I’m thankful for,strength everyday to get up, lessons i learned on being intentional from my small group,prayers answered in my grandsons marriage,prayer answered for my daughter getting to buy a home,how i have seen God cause our family to rally around each other as we stand during difficult times right now.How God has taught me something i have prayed about and is showing me how to do it.Most of all for His never failing love!

  5. This was a perfect post. I looked for it yesterday but it’s here today. Perfectly wrapped. It seemed your winter was so harsh and now it’s full on summer. Here too. We’ve had a few cooler days so I too have taken time off. I compare myself to my image and I do not like that I need to rest. But I do. In fact I awaken early and do my Bible reading but go back to sleep because it’s quiet. Peaceful. After years and years of hurrying. And months of chaos and now slowly we shall put things in order. It seems like there’s a heavy load on many today. Let’s fill ourselves up with as you said. Doing what counts to spread the Good News that Jesus loves us and died for us! He arose too. And that we can be forgiven and have a Good Shepherd in Him. God is good.
    1. Kitchen cabinet pulls are on
    2. Mirrors are hung
    3. Good conversation with my parent’s friends
    4. We too like a funny tv show nightly. Ours is Hogan’s Heroes
    5. Gentle breezes
    6. Things found I’d lost
    7. Opportunities to share Christ

Please Share Your Extraordinary Thoughts!

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