Monday Moment at the Well

A few thoughts for you to unwrap and spend some time with today:

Before you were born, before the birth of Jesus, before God created the Earth, before time as we understand it, He has been there.  Look back.  All the trials – the ones you’re amazed you survived … well, you did.  Look back at all those perfect moments in the arms of a loved one, at the beautiful sunsets … He gave you those moments, those sunsets.

God was, and is, always there.  You are never alone.  And there has never been a moment in your life when you were not extravagantly loved.

Merry Christmas from The Well.


Finding Majesty Amid the Chaos

If you know me at all, you probably know that I’m not a snow person.  I grew up in North Florida and lived in the South for more than half my life.  I’ve lived in the Midwest and the North and I’ve never developed an affection for the stuff.  The only kind of white Christmas I’ve ever found appealing was one near white sandy beaches.

But today I was driving in the countryside in Upstate New York after an early morning snowfall, on my way to an appointment.  I rounded a corner and honest to Pete, what I saw had tears rolling down my cheeks in seconds.  I crossed over a creek and it was one of the most perfect scenes I’ve ever witnessed.  All the trees had a coat of light, fluffy snow on them.  The rocks in the creek had a coat of snow on them, and the shoreline and the ground in the woods were covered in that same fluffy white snow.  The contrast of the nearly black creek made it all the more stunning.

I was overwhelmed.  I mean, truly humbled, awed and overcome by the beauty of that scene.  Only God can create such splendor.  And that’s what had me crying.  God’s majesty, God’s power, God’s glory, God’s complete rule and love are all around us, every minute of every day.  And He created something for everyone, didn’t He?  Some of us love summer, some of us dream of fall foliage, some love rain, some love snow, some are mountain people, some prefer flat desert lands, some thrive in tropical climes…  and isn’t it just like our great God to gift us with all of it?

I don’t love snow.  I’m a tropics-loving Southern gal.  But there is no denying that I had a momentary love for snow this morning.  I couldn’t safely stop for a photo, but I will try to hold onto that scene in my memory for a long time to come.  I’m glad I was paying attention, that I allowed myself to break out of my thoughts and my planning to really absorb what was before me.

It’s a busy time of year, when it’s easy to become overwhelmed with “to do” lists and stressed out over our schedules, finances, relationships, and all the “shoulds” in our heads.  But I urge you to take a moment and notice the beauty all around you.  Soak it in.  It may help you to remember that you are small, your problems are small, today is short (as is your life here on Earth).  Savor the scenes in the snow as you drive, the atmosphere of Christmas while you shop – the hustle and bustle, the music, the whole scene – and remember the reason for it all.  Jesus.

Now for a cup of hot chocolate…


It’s a Wonderful Life

I am so very grateful for my little life right now. I know it is going to change – Andrew and I both feel it in the air, in our prayers, in our growing spiritual passions. And I look forward to that part of our journey, as well.
But for now, it is perfect just the way it is.
Today I enjoyed a nice hot shower after I walked downstairs on capable legs to go out and brush off my nice car that runs well, so that someone could plow the lot so I don’t have to shovel. I spent a long time in prayer, Scripture reading, and other stuff without being rushed. I have our Christmas lights on in our warm apartment in the middle of the day, which I rarely do (you’re welcome, National Grid). I have a cozy, purring, loving kitty draped over my shoulder. I have a full belly and I’m sipping hot cocoa. I have a husband and friends who love me and a chosen family I’m honored to be a part of. I have hope for the dreams God is giving me, and hope and peace through the assurance of His presence with me in this life and the next.
So, rather than complaining about this stupid snow (oops) or that this is our most frugal Christmas yet (I am NOT trying to garner sympathy – we knowingly chose vacation over December’s Christmas/anniversary/birthday treats and continue to affirm what a perfect choice it was!!), I am genuinely overjoyed and my heart is so full of love that it seems to want to keep leaking out of my eyes. Of the people on this planet, I am among the richest … in every way imaginable, and I just wanted to share that with you today.

Monday Moment: How to Stop Obsessing!

Have you ever obsessed over an unpleasant situation in your life until it just about drove you insane?  Tell the truth!  Well, when we zoom in on our problems and continuously revisit them, we keep our focus on the problem, not allowing room for a solution to pop into our heads.  And it’s like picking at a sore.  It never heals, and it gets inflamed.

I’m a work in progress, but below are a few things I do to get my head out of that cycle of replaying painful conversations, or carrying on internal dialogue, or over-analyzing an unpleasant issue I must deal with.

Zooming Out

This is excellent for perspective and objectivity.  Here’s how it works for me:

I picture myself doing whatever I’m doing (sitting at the table typing on my laptop, for example) as though I were a different person standing in the room watching me.  And then I zoom out.  Maybe I picture myself as though I were standing on the roof of our home looking down into the room I’m sitting in.  Then I maybe picture my neighborhood in my head like I was looking at Google Earth.  Then perhaps I zoom out so it’s the whole city I see, and so on.  Eventually, if I haven’t gained perspective about my situation, or achieved some emotional distance from it, I can zoom all the way out so that I’m picturing the whole universe and I, and my problems, are so completely lost from view that I can really feel how small they are in the bigger picture.

This isn’t a transcendental out-of-body experience, and I don’t open my mind up to just whatever is out there.  It’s a focused and intentional visualization.  And I can often effectively remind myself through this exercise just how finite my problems are and gain perspective and objectivity, so that I can approach the issue later, less emotionally and more realistically.

Healthy, Happy Hobby-ing

Another thing I do is craft.  I make and sell greeting cards, and sometimes when I find myself obsessing over a problem I will hole up in my studio with some jazz and a candle burning, or essential oils in the diffuser, and design and create pretty things that require me to engage a different part of my brain and focus on the current project.  It’s best to go for a hobby that requires your full attention and being artistic or creative really does wonders for balance in the old noggin’.  I do not recommend reading unless it’s an intensely engaging book; it’s too easy to zone out and let the mind wander right back to the situation you’re trying to leave behind for a while.

I specify “healthy, happy hobby” because throwing darts at the picture of the person who is at the center of a conflict you’re obsessing over isn’t healthy and isn’t happy (though it may be gratifying); also, baking 4 pans of brownies may not be a great plan in case you are inclined to sit in the floor and eat them all in a fit of emotional bingeing!


Yep.  I went there.  Though it’s not my favorite option, because it’s easy to zone out and get back on the crazy train heading right back to the den of turmoil you’re trying to vacate for a while (especially jogging, walking, riding the stationary bike, etc.).  That said, certain physical exercises, such as yoga, require concentration. When I’m on my yoga mat in a tricky posture, if I let my mind wander I’m likely to hurt myself, possibly seriously.  It’s the same with lifting weights.  I imagine martial arts and tai chi are similar, though I don’t practice them and can’t say for sure.


Serving others takes my mind off my problems, and afterward I invariably see my problems – even the really big ones – in their proper perspective.  Look for organizations that can help you find a place to serve in the community, or go directly to a soup kitchen, or something similar.  You may well fall for this this labor of love, and if you serve regularly, you’re less likely to lose perspective in your own life.

Do Not, Under Any Circumstances…

Lose yourself in television, binge eat, turn to alcohol, or indulge in any of your addictive behaviors.  Afterward you won’t have better perspective, and you’ll have to dig out from under guilt and self-loathing and start over in an even worse frame of mind.  Also, don’t run around and retell the story to everyone with a pulse.  Talking it over with multiple people is even more harmful than internal dialogue, because now you’re involving other people in your business, and probably someone else’s.  A counselor or a trusted friend or two – who will give you honest feedback or be a confidential sounding board – should be plenty.

Final Thoughts

You may be wondering why I’m not recommending prayer and meditation.  That’s because, depending on your level of discipline on a given day, that may well end in frustration as you spiral right back to the obsessive thinking.

The point is to create distance from the issue and break the obsessive thinking, not to run from problems or pretend they aren’t there and don’t need addressing.  This gives us the ability to rest our minds and approach the situation/person from a calmer, more balanced place.

Hope this helps!