At the start of a new year many of us decide to make some big changes in how we do things…
This is my new ‘now’ reminder, to seize the day and make tomorrow better, by doing my best today, now.
On days when I want to change everything about the past or the future, it is refreshing to simply remind my heart of the tremendous power the choices I make today carry. The seeds I sow today will reap a harvest in the future, so the opportunities of today deserve my full attention, now.
These cool watches are made by @stealtimeback who donate to charities that help children in need! ~♡~ Having dealt with them personally, I must say they simply have a fabulous customer service manner and set the standard high in customer care. Kudos!
When I look at my ‘now’ watch, I find myself motivated to crush procrastination to the ground, and get things done that are essential and necessary. Maybe you find it easy to do the more challenging chores of today? Maybe you fumble through your day with low energy or fear of failure? Whichever circumstance you find yourself in, start to make some small, significant changes now. Each little successful step will soon recharge and motivate you to make bigger changes. I am doing it, and already I am finding that I spend less time in the procrastination valley, and I see ‘now’ as a place full of immense potential and endless possibilities.
The person you will be tomorrow, depends on the person you choose to be today… ⏰ Denise
Miracles come in moments. Be ready and willing. – Wayne Dyer
An inside look at Citizen Journalism, by Denise Kennedy
It’s been around for years, and you have possibly been doing it but never thought of it in this context. It keeps you awake at night when you should be asleep, but when the writing bug hits you, the pen (or the keyboard) is in control. For all the writers reading this, it comes as no surprise that writing has been a passion of many since time began, but for some of you the title for a specific type of writing is new news for you: I speak of the trendy, hipster, dedicated blogger, known as ‘the citizen journalist’.
The following definition given by Rosen sums it up quite simply:
“When the people formerly known as the audience employ the press tools they have in their possession to inform one another, that’s citizen journalism’.(Jay Rosen, 2008)
Citizen journalism is based upon the occupation of citizen writers, processing, collating and producing content for public readership, news and information.
According to Bowman and Willis, (We Media, 2003), written back in 2003:
“We are at the beginning of a Golden Age of journalism — but it is not journalism as we have known it. Media futurists have predicted that by 2021, “citizens will produce 50 percent of the news peer-to-peer.” However, mainstream news media have yet to meaningfully adopt or experiment with these new forms. Historically, journalists have been charged with informing the democracy. But their future will depend not on only how well they inform but how well they encourage and enable conversations with citizens. That is the challenge.”
It is important to note that we cannot make the mistake of confusing what is known as Community Journalism and Civic Journalism, which are both related to the actual writing and reporting of professional journalists. The huge increase of media access, online platforms, digital marketing and new technology, have all led to growth in volume of citizen produced articles, and as this trend is set to rise, it can be expected that citizen journalists will most definitely be seen on a larger scale moving forward.
♪♫•*¨*•. In The Hallway .•*¨*•♫♪ by Denise Kennedy
For several weeks now, a phrase I heard has rolled around my head, at times causing me to literally stop all I am doing and let it impact my heart deeply. ♪♫•*¨*•.“Until God opens the next door for you, PRAISE Him in the hallway!”.•*¨*•♫♪
As I sat in the garden to begin writing this piece, and had simply written the quote at the top of my blank page, my cell phone rang…my dear friend shared this exact quote with me as we talked, having had no idea what I was writing about…perfect timing and confirmation!
God opens doors it’s true – sometimes He opens them as soon as we ask, while at other times He chooses to open them whether we ask or not. There are occasions when God seems to keep us in the holding pattern, circling to land, and we wait and wait. Recently a huge open door presented itself in my life, and as I currently walk through it, I’m very much aware of the other doors I want to open in my life. There is a lesson in ‘doors’ and a learning curve in how we handle them.
Is there anything grander than that perfect ‘door-swinging open’ moment? When at last that brilliant big door you have been waiting on, opens wide before you and you rush right through it with heart-beating expectation, and excitement. It is a wonderful time, and we thank God as we run with our arms waving over our head like a giddy child at Christmas. So, what happens when the door seems to be solemnly closed, at least for now, or forever? Do we sit sunken and dispondant in the hallway of our life, dreading the season of waiting? Do we sit there quite possibly drooling at the door handle begging it to open, and tiresomely hating even the wallpaper or paint on the familiar walls around us? In this place our attitudes can become indifferent or non-challant, despairing and forlorn. But read again for me if you will, these thought provoking words: “Until God opens the next door for you, PRAISE Him in the hallway!” ~ read them again, this time slowly and let them sink deeply into your tired heart. Let them rest there unshaken and still.
♪♫•*¨*•.“Until God opens the next door for you, PRAISE Him in the hallway!”.•*¨*•♫♪
What door are you waiting on? Are you imagining a new career which will suddenly bring success and comfort into your life? Is there some new quest or adventure beckoning you on to a place of wonder, that somehow seems out of grasp for now? What or who are you possibly waiting for? Well, stop right now – could it be that in all of the time you are waiting for these doors to open, that God wants you to learn to be content right where you are, with Him in the hallway of your life? With Him in the hallway could be the preparation place for what is behind that yet closed door? There could be amazing secrets, words of wisdom and songs of ascent that He longs to share with you, as you sit in the hallway of your present life. Don’t wish this season away, there are diamonds and gems to be gleaned at your feet.
Have you ever locked yourself out of your hotel room? You sit there on the soft plush carpet hoping a room porter will come along, or you wait on that family member who said they would be with you shortly. You suddenly notice the hallway you usually rush hurriedly down, in a whole new light and from a very different view now that you’re sitting on the floor. You see the beautiful light fittings on the chandelier above you, or you admire the ornate mirrors and exquisite paintings on the walls. You take time to appreciate the flowers in the cut glass vases and the stunning antique furniture beneath them. You see, sometimes God causes the doors to close so that we simply learn to appreciate what is around us, and we begin to praise Him in the hallway of paused moments. True it has to be said, when we finally get inside to the other side of the closed door, we truly welcome it with a greater appreciation, having had to wait for it. The delays can cause a deeper appreciation to grow in us, which will make the grand door opening event a far more delightful experience. Sometimes, what the heart must wait longer for, it also grows to miss and then value much more!
God may open the right door but in a different way, He may even open a completely different door at a time we had not foreseen or planned. He may even lead us through a door we do not want or desire at any time in our lives, and these are the moments that show us whether we really trust Him or not. These seasons reveal to us what is really in our heart – if we trust Him as the ‘Door Opener’ of our lives, then we trust His timing too! You may see others rush through the doors that you yourself wanted, and as they disappear through it leaving you with only the sound of their laughter, you sink again onto the carpet of your life and wonder why? It seems so unfair you feel – but for now, just leave the lives of others in His hands, their journey is not any of your business, let it go. Don’t envy the lives of others, when really only they and God know the journey that took them to that place of His providence. The same God of providence and provision is also with you. He longs to be the One your eyes are fixed upon as you sit in your hallway. He wants to be the One you lean on, run to, sing to, cry to, talk to, laugh with, live with, rely on and depend on! The doors that you walk through are important, but timing is crucial and critical, indeed the right door at the wrong time is a disaster waiting to happen. So whether someone else has closed a door for you, or indeed if it were you who slammed it shut yourself, start trusting God that He can open it again at just the perfect time. If an employer, friend or family member has let you down with regard to a door you were pounding on, stop pushing it! Begin instead to look to the only One who holds all the keys to all of the doors, all of the careers, jobs, plans, adventures, and dreams you’re hoping for in the future. If you’re tired of pounding doors or screaming at them to open, decide to sit down, not in defeat but in strength. For you know that the Key Holder is in control, and at just the right time and in just the most perfectly beautiful way, He is able to unlock that door, sweep you up and walk you through it.
As I walk through doors, and contemplate many new ones, I know that there is a still, quiet place called the hallway – and there are wonderful lessons to learn there, there is strength to be found there, with the Key Holder of my life.
“We have the choice to: Worry or Worship. Panic or Pray. Tremble or Trust.” – Rick Warren ♪♫•*¨*•.¸¸❤¸¸.•*¨*•♫♪
There are doors we are called to wait at, keep knocking on or keep believing for – these are the ‘Faith Doors’ in our lives, and we keep on asking and seeking, and God will honour us as we trust Him. But whether the doors open that we want or not, we must learn to ‘Praise Him In The Hallway’, while we wait – God also waits, on our honest response! So sit down in strength, in trust and in the knowledge that the One with the keys and time in His hands, knows what He is doing –
He is doing something in our hearts in the hallway!
It was a normal kind of day, for me. Although I read recently; “There is no such thing in anyone’s life as an unimportant day.” (A. Woollcott) ~ but as I made my way home on my usual power walk from college, the path seemed the same as it always was and I simply soaked in the beauty of spring emerging around me.
~ ❤ ~
As I meandered up the street, birds sang and daffodils waved to me in the light breeze. Then I heard it, laughter and giggling. I wondered who it was. I soon started to smile too, as it was an infectious kind of giggling and it beautifully broke my somewhat lonesome walk. I then turned onto a blossom covered avenue, and there they were; a nervous mother and an excited little lady all of about six years of age. The little princess was rushing to climb onto her shiny new bicycle. Picture the scene; cherry blossoms have lightly dusted the footpath and roadway, as if cheering her on, as a little blonde learner tries to steady herself on her vehicle. She is dressed all in pink from her glittering hair bobbins to the pink and gold runners on her feet. Even her bicycle was a bright hot pink, as it shone in the sunlight.
I walked slowly, I wanted to take it in. I surmised easily that this was a cycling lesson. One nervous mother, plus one giddy courageous six year old and factor in “no stabilisers”, equals a recipe for fun or that of disaster. I stood there, the unnoticed audience at the corner of the avenue. The mother did her very best to stay at the side of her wobbling enthusiastic child. The novice cyclist clearly had never cycled without the aid of her stabilisers firmly supporting her, and although she was excited there was a look of fear and caution in her face. Her mum was wearing a long black jacket which clearly was not a good choice, as she stopped every few seconds to grab it up under her arm so that she could get closer to her adventurous youngster while not getting caught in the spokes.
I looked into the mother’s face, she was scared, yet exhilarated with joy to see her daughter trying so hard to steady herself and not fall. This young at heart mother seemed quite like a child herself, as she rambled along beside her daughter watching her every attempt to stay upright and not collide with any of the parked cars. What a beautiful scene,blossoms, birds chirping and life happening right there in front of me! Perhaps this mother was filled with thoughts of when she first learned to cycle properly? As I stood there, my mind raced back to those days of conquering a two wheeler bike myself. I remember the thrill and the adrenaline of finally chasing the breeze on that country road. Cycling was always one of my favourite pastimes, freedom and adventure were mine then. I remember especially those many occasions when I needed to cycle downhill with my legs on the handlebars so the farmer’s dog could not bite me as I whizzed by. I was scared silly but what a challenge.
So back to today ~ Well the little girl won her battle with gravity and suddenly that fearful little face was full of joy and accomplishment. The nervous giggles I had first heard had now turned to full blown laughter as she took off down the street away from me, with her mother chasing her from behind with a laughter equal in every way to that of her little pink angel, and a determination to stay beside her to keep her safe.
Then came my lesson; right there, on the side of that cherry blossomed road, I realised that I had spent all of that morning grappling and fighting with thoughts about the future, what next? What was I supposed to do with my life? Asking God to come and guide me. That was when the giggling distracted me from my anxious thoughts. So I rested my back against the tree behind me, and let God speak. And He did. He reminded me that I am in some ways like this little girl learning to ride the bicycle of life, I am OK when I know where I am going and how to stay upright and in my lane; but as soon as it seems apparent to me that a change is coming or I must navigate a path I have not cycled before nor chosen, that I become nervous and would rather dismount or run away. Like a movie scene, He showed me so many occasions when I was afraid, how He came along beside me, and never left my side, nor would He ever. As warm tears filled my eyes, I spoke the words out loud “He will never ever leave me!”. Even when I think I can handle it on my own, He is still there, ready to take hold of me when I fall or when I fail. On that blossomed path, He brought it all back home to me, that He lavishes blessings over me in a million different ways every day, some I see and some I don’t. He is the great seer of all things and I can trust Him. I wiped the tears from my face and floated up the road as it were, grateful for this amazing detour.
Maybe you are learning a hard lesson, one you would have never chosen to cycle through in a million years? Maybe you are trying to help someone you love overcome a huge fear or obstacle in their life? But either way, take a few moments to remember the day you learned to cycle without stabilisers, or the day you overcame something you felt you would never surmount; and remember that the same amazing God who walked beside you then, whether you knew it or not, is right beside you now. We all have to learn to cycle without stabilisers, but in our daily lives there is a real Stabiliser who will never ever ask us to meet life’s challenges without Him.
So as I write this, I am continuing to cycle on the path He leads me, remembering that what is unknown to me, is very much known to Him! xx Nisey ~ ❤ ~