May I be honest? I am a liar of the worst kind.

I’m not the kind of liar who is malicious or purposefully evil, but I am a liar of the worst kind. You heard right…the worst that I can think of anyway.

Now I can just hear my Daddy say to me, “Peachie-peach,(that’s what he calls me) you could never be the worst kind of anything!” (He is unashamedly biased like that and I am still thrilled that he is!) But, sorry Daddy, I am. Just what kind of liar am I?

Let’s see.

If you were to graph lies from harmless to just plain nasty, the categories may look like this:

Courtesy of Stuart Miles @freedigitalphotos.net

Courtesy of Stuart Miles @freedigitalphotos.net

Precious liar: the kind that lies because they don’t know any better, like my two year old.

Scaredy pants liar: the kind that lies because they don’t want to get caught, like my four year old
…and every teenager I know

Evil liar: the kind that lies knowingly and willingly…you know who I’m talking about

Then there’s me, the Truthful liar: the worst kind of liar whose lies she believes to be truth. 

Yes, I am such a good liar that when I lie to myself, I actually believe what I am saying. As a matter of fact, I don’t even realize that I am lying. In my mind, I am doing the right thing. I am doing what in my mind I think I am supposed to do, what “you” think would be the proper thing to do. Thing is, surface truth is all you are getting. Deep down, I am evil.

Courtesy of Stuart Miles @freegitialphotos.net

Courtesy of Stuart Miles @freegitialphotos.net

For instance, when you tell me that you just got a new house and a promotion and I hug you and say that it is so wonderful for you…I’m lying. I wish it was me.

When your kid beats mine at anything and I tell my child that it is her effort that I am most proud of, I’m lying. I wanted her to win.

When I do a ten minute workout and then eat french fries afterwards, I’m lying to myself. I did not work off those extra calories.

When, at the end of the day, I zone out to Netflix because I spent my whole day “working” and I “deserve” it, I’m lying. I am looking for a way to be lazy.

When you find out that my son is wearing a leg brace not because he broke it but because it is a condition, and you smile and say, “Oh, he’s so cute though,”, I may smile back at you, LIES… I’ve slapped you in my mind.

When everything has gone wrong, yet I speak with such confidence that everything is going to be ok. LYING…I am scared that what I want to happen, won’t. Then how will I uphold my faith…to “you”?

Yup. If I may be brutally honest with you and with myself, I am taken aback with just how many lies I have actually lived. I’ve believed these lies and more. Until today. My family is going through a season of birthdays, anniversaries, and milestones. This time of year moves my mind to reflection and this year the mirror was not kind, and I am so thankful for this painful awakening.

Because now I can change it.

I want to continue to live life fully, not fearfully. I want to deal with life as it comes, instead of trying to defend it. I believe there is growth, there is purpose, and there is promise in the pain and the shortcomings I try so hard to avoid. I want to know that life. 

And that life is there for me if I can stop lying…… and start LIVING.

Have you ever found yourself trying to be the man or woman you want to be but you find yourself pretending to be that person, instead of actually being her or being him? In all honesty, I am done lying to myself. This may not be the “build-your-blog-base” post I should write, but authentic yet successful living is what I am compelled to write. If you want to take this journey with me and bring others along, follow these next few blog posts. I want to see change, not just talk about it. If you are ready  (I promise not to tell your dad), then please join me. I have some principles I have lived and learned that will help us in this quest for living in Truth. They are not my own…I am not that smart. However, wisdom comes not from coming up with the right ideas but living them.

Life isn’t easy, but with a little effort it can be…

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Goodbye Frozen Death! Hello Spring!

“In the bleak midwinter…”

Dead Tree Without Leaves Isolated” by Ohmega1982

Yup. That about sums up how I felt all winter long. Not snowy enough in my midwest to inspire instagram worthy landscape pictures. So cold not enough layers of thermal underwear warmed my little tush enough to get me outside to linger in winter fun.

This winter was just bleak…no wonder all I could see was the dead in it. 

As I was stuck inside with my two not-yet-ready for school kids, I often found myself feeling facing this bleak feeling. How many more rounds of “the wheels on the bus go round and round” was I going to make it through? (On a positive note, I now know how to use “creature power”…thanks PBS and Wild Kratts). I formally want to submit a name change for this winter. I was thinking maybe the Summer-Killer but I have decided on naming it Frozen Death. I can imagine my boys will have a lot of fun learning that in 4K class. Spring, summer, fall, and Frozen Death. Ok, maybe not. But it got me thinking…

Death is not a huge jump to describe winter. Nature shows us again how every stage of life is actually needed. The death of winter..the dormant seeds, the hibernating animals, the reboot of creation, will give way and let in a whole new, beautiful season of LIFE with Spring. I may not like its coldness or darkness. I may drink a bit too much hot chocolate and put on a few too many “warming pounds”. I may not like it, but I need it. Life cycles with death.

Easter is around the corner at my house. The kids are on “Spring” break (quotes because we never know quite how the weather will feel.) We are excited to have family time and in those times we will visit the idea of death. In our house, we honor the Easter season.

“Golgota” by bela_kiefer The story of the cross and the sacrifice made has an important message for us on the meaning of death. The remembering of Jesus’ death reminds me that there is a power so much bigger and stronger and grander than the loss. I am not asking you to get spiritual with me right now but just walk with me down this road. His death and then glorious resurrection is a beautiful mirror of the hope we can have when we face death.

We will never like death in any of its forms; death can by physical, but it can also be a lost relationship, dream, idea, and more. These deaths need not to be in vain ever.

Even from loss, life can spring up–through honoring a loved one and beginning a new journey with that loved one in mind; through the failure of an idea and new one springs up.

When our winter brings death, we have to hold on because just like the Easter story new life is on its way.

Hold on to hope even if the surroundings look bleak. If you can hold on, then hold on to Hope.

Goodbye frozen death…HELLO SPRING!!

HOPE

courtesy by freedigitalphotos.net: by adamr

For whatever life dishes, I’m trying to stay,

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Christmas Special for Me{N}U: The Same Old

This Holiday Season is full of what some call tradition…

I could call it the “same old thing”.

Image courtesy of kibsri/freegdigitalphotos.net

Image courtesy of kibsri/freegdigitalphotos.net

I usually don’t do the “same old” very well.

My husband on the other hand is an expert. For example, he can eat the same meal FOREVER depending on the meal, of course. While he was in high school, my husband was dared by his father to eat only pizza (his favorite food) for a month, thinking hubby dear would surely fail. My husband, and the pizza company, triumphed gloriously in cheesy goodness.

I can hardly stand eating the same meal twice in ONE WEEK! Even the tastiest of morsels have a time limit on my palate. Leftovers make me feel like I’ve been there, ate that–new experience please. I need to trade in the same old thing.

I need something different.

I am guessing this buffet-style of living strikes a common chord with some of you. If not, humor the rest of us and read along anyway. AYCE (all-you-can-eat) chains can be found everywhere. Their appeal, besides the gorge factor, can be found in the tremendous variety that each restaurant offers. Channel surfing can now be deemed a national sport due to the multitudes of viewing options in the digital world (so how comes there’s never anything to watch?) Go ahead…add to this list of overindulgence aka things I often enjoy.

I enjoy variety because I tend to get–what’s that word?–oh yeah, “bored” with the same old things so I continue on with this endless, and admittedly tiring, search for the new, for the trendy, for the exciting. However, I continue to receive a lot of same ol’ –just repackaged.

Take a look at holiday specials for example.

PicMonkey Sample

picMonkey.com

Most of us celebrate “the holidays” in some way and we each have our favorite traditions and mine are typically found in music and movies. I love Christmas music and movies! Take a moment and sing your favorite Yuletide melody with me. (You know you want to spread Christmas cheer!) My husband, the pizza eater,—not so much. He gets tired of the, you guessed it, same old. Same old songs, same old movies, every year. He asks, “How many times can you listen to that song?” And I reply, “It’s not the same song. The last one was a ballad, this was one was sung polka style!” And one of my fave shows can be watched with the main character as a mouse, or as a digitally animated old man portrayed by an actor of many faces, or better yet a puppet! All three shows based on the same book with the same name, and same endings but because of my distaste of the same old, I can keep all three in my holiday watching rotation without boredom because even the smallest variation to me makes the show just a little different, just a bit new. My family and I can chug down cocoa and gobble up popcorn for each and every one of them (hubby joins in for the eating). Holiday traditions know extremely well how to repurpose the same old, which is why I love them.

I’m good with the same old in a different way. Because it seems new. Shallow? Perhaps, but at least I’m honest. And truth really be told, the same old things aren’t what bores me, it’s the same old feelings. I chase feelings.

This time of year is full of feelings. I reenact the same traditions so that I can recapture those peaceful, loving feelings and share them with my own children and the people I love. Those feelings never get tiring.

In my life, I often struggle to stay content with the same old. Just today I got upset as my house was  compared to someone else’s and it didn’t quite measure up. Not quite big enough. Not quite lavish enough. Does that have to equal not quite good enough? I get sucked in to the lie to buy more to feel full, to look over the fence to find the greener grass, to trade up to be better.

The same old game.

The same old lie.

My feelings need to be controlled. Easy to say but without help almost impossible to do. I have to be aware. I have to be on guard. And for me, I have to pray. I celebrate Christmas because my life center is Christ. I notice that as I am grateful and realize how much God has done and is doing for me, I can’t help but be ok with my present situation. There is a wise word from the Bible which says: in all things, be content. Such a small statement but such a huge task. Did you catch the small but massive word: ALL.

In ALL things?

Without enough money to pay bills? With sickness? With loneliness?

My Fridge with Thanksgiving LeftoversWith leftovers?

Be content. In ALL things.

The only way I have found to do this is to take a page from that carol of Christmas and repurpose my same old attitude into something new. I may not be able to change the story of my life, but through prayer and intentionality, I can change how I think and respond to it. It’s my choice. My attitude. My outlook. My response.

This holiday and in this new year, I am going to do something different. How about you? Settling for the same old? Searching for the feelings of newness? Why not trade it for just something different. And the difference starts with
Me …&…U. Check out this list from blogger Ruth at her site living well  spending less to get you started.

Always-in-Pursuit-7-Ways-to-Be-More-Content-Right-Now-contentment-faith-inspiration

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays. And let’s work this year on staying,

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