The Whisper Within

" Believing that God powers strange coincidences and the journey that lies ahead."


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I got admit this happened last week but I’ve been so swamped with work, in a good way, that I haven’t had time to write. But maybe God was in the delay because the eve before Thanksgiving I have a lot to be thankful for. But what happened last week was a great reminder that God has ways to bring us joy, happiness,and the unexpected coincidences. So here’s what happened last week…

Today The Dow Jones industrial hit an all time high. As a CFP, this is pretty exciting stuff.

I got admit I love the majority my clients and really enjoy working with them but sometimes there’s a bad apple and that’s just part of life. It’s still isn’t fun.

After work, I shut off my computer, changed into a swimsuit, and after a ten minute ride in my Jeep,Kipper and I were at the beach. This beach is an off leash beach for dogs.  I took Kipper’s leash off and within seconds she was sprinting down the beach and trouncing in the water.

I couldn’t keep up. I wouldn’t dare try. I walked by three young girls and they asked,”Is that your dog?”

I nodded and one of them said,”I’d like to have half the amount of energy. Your dog is just so happy here.”

I smirked,”Ya, me too. I wish I had that kind of energy. And yes, the beach is her happy place.”

I said goodbye, walked away, found a spot down the beach, dropped my towel, drop my shorts, took off my t-shirt, ran into the water,and submerged my body under a wave.

When I came up for air, I couldn’t help but let out a happy scream. The water was freezing. Someone said today it was only 56° in the water.

After about thirty minutes at the beach, it was time for Kipper and I to go home. As we we’re leaving I walked by the girls again and waved goodbye.

One of the girls said,”You look like a little kid out there dunking yourself in the water.” I said,”I’m not a little kid I have adult kids probably around your ages. They are twenty-three and twenty-four.”

They shook their heads and said,”No way.” We all laughed, they told me their ages and their names and yes,they were between the ages of 24 and 25 right around my kid’s ages.

They asked about my kids and they said they must be full of joy to have you as a mother . My heart sunk,”I can’t tell you how much that means to me . Today was a very rough day. Someone was trying to steal my joy. It hurt. But hearing you say that I am filled with joy makes me happy. We need to really love each other and be happy . You all did that for me today .Meeting you today was just what I needed. It is a good coincidence.”

Diana said,” I don’t believe in coincidences.I believe God orchestrates these kind of meetings.”

I quietly smiled,”Me too.”

“You are a gift to me today,”Julia said “I will remember this moment for the rest of my life.”
I asked to take their picture so I could remember them and and how these three beautiful strangers change my mood,changed my perspective, and help to restore my joy. They were a gift to me and because of their easy and open conversation, and loving hearts, my joy was restored.
Kipper and I walked down the beach and I waved goodbye.
I looked up at the sky and silently whispered, “Thank you God for Julia, Diana, and Cherith.” I looked down at my furry friend,”and yes, thanks for Kipper.”
So the eve before Thanksgiving, in a strange year of missing family and friends, can you really love,show extra kindness, and share happiness to those who may be strangers but may need it more than ever ?
Can you love like Kipper?
You shall also love the stranger, for you were strangers in the land of Egypt.
Deuteronomy 10:19




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Today I called one of my clients to review her accounts. “Hello, Bea! How are you?” After we exchange a few pleasantries, and reviewed the business at hand, Bea and I discussed how COVID was affecting each of us.

Bea explained, “I don’t like being quarantined but I have had opportunities to help others in this independent and assisted living facility.”

She explained that there was a sixty-nine year old lady who is legally blind and the staff is having difficulty administering her eyedrops . They asked Bea whether she would be willing to help out because they have heard that she is a kind soul. Bea further explained,”Do you know for the last nine years the lady has lived here without leaving her room and that she has had no friends? But all that has changed, she’s not only let me administer the eyedrops but now we walk almost everyday together. I guess that’s why at eighty-seven years old, why I’m still here. I still have a purpose. My purpose and the bottom line is to show love and care for others. And that’s what you do, Lisa. You care for me.”

I hung up the phone and later on in the afternoon, went for a walk uptown and thought about the earlier conversation. It occurred to me that last night I wrote in my journal, What is my purpose? What is your will God, for me?

As I passed a church, I saw a sign that read this :

YOU ARE NOT TOO OLD

AND ITS NOT TOO LATE

I took a picture and then smiled at the sky. Yes, that’s the purpose ! To love and serve others. Bea has it right !

It IS all about love! How are you loving and helping others ?

“It is God himself who has made us… and long ages ago he planned that we should spend these lives in helping others.”

Ephesians 2:10 TLB


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This morning Kipper and I were on a morning walk when I saw a piece of paper laying on the sidewalk. I bent down and read the note.

It read: Tom- I love you with all I am or will ever be. You are my protector, lover, best friend, and so much more, and I am so happy that I am truly able to be your wife now too!! I am so happy to have found my soul completion. Love you forever!

Love and peace

Leah

Reading this notes filled me with so much hope. I thought Love does exist.

I quickly took a picture of the note and texted it to some of my single friends with these words, Saw this on my morning walk. Praying this perfect love for you. Feeling hopeful!

The text responses from my four of friends varied from:

Heart and peace sign! I hope Tom feels the same and he accidentally dropped it? I would keep a note like that.

But why was it not saved in a safe place by Tom?

Aww!How sweet! LOL, maybe he didn’t feel the same and threw it out his car window!

Awww.Tom needs to learn how to hold on to things like this. LOL. Leah is like, “You lost my love note?” Tom’s like oh crap! I lost her note!

My response :

LOL! He probably kept it tight in his pocket at all times but it fell out while he was walking and now he is distraught wandering the neighborhood trying to find it.YEP! I’m A HOPELESS ROMANTIC!

I looked down at the note and thought, I hope Tom finds his lost note. 

Kipper and I continued on our walk.

I threw a smirk up at the sky and silently thanked God for the sign and thought, True love does exist.

Love, Peace and Hope IS just a step away. IT IS COMING !

Can you believe God has good things for you ?

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”

Jeremiah 29:11


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Today Facebook reminded me of this key date.

Five years ago, I arrived in California. It was a dream- No! It was a prayer answered. Most days,I can’t believe that I really live here.

Last night, I watched the movie, The War Room. It is about asking God to fight our battles through prayers. The beach was just a want not a need. God answered that want. I am humbled by this. It got me thinking of all the prayers he has answered. Here’s some of highlights.

-Eighteen years ago, I went through a divorce, I worried and prayed,”Let my kids be happy.”

– A few months after a divorce, my ex became a paraplegic in a snowmobile accident, as a single mom, with my financial planning business in its infancy, I struggled financially. I know I prayed endless nights just to have enough money to get by and pay for groceries.

-As a single mom, I wanted my kids to go college but didn’t think I would ever have the finances for them to do so.

-Six years ago I became unexplainable sick. I lost about twenty pounds and didn’t know the battle I was fighting was Lyme disease and mold toxicity.

-Five years ago, I wanted a better quality of life to live life with a chronic disease and to be near my daughter who was going to be attending college in California.

– For the last eighteen years, I prayed for a husband, a companion.

So how did God answer?

He answered in HUGE ways!

Today Jake is an engineer in Chicago and Tarah is finishing college in New York.For the most part, both are happy.

Financially, we survived as a family, even though the year of the accident, I only made roughly ten thousand dollars. God provided for me and my children, day by day, just like manna from the sky for the Israelites.

He provided the dream and moved me to the beach so even with a chronic illness, I can walk everyday . For that I am so grateful. I may not completed healed from Lyme disease but am stronger, healthier, and enjoying swimming, yoga and playing pickleball. Heck, I’m even get some of my sassy pants personality back.

And about the husband… I finally have met someone …. PSYCHE!

NOT YET ! It IS coming !

God is not tired yet of me asking for the husband! He likes hearing from me and YOU!

God knows my heart and desires and I believe he will answer the small and BIG PRAYERS !

Can you trust God with the HUGE desires of your heart?

What prayers has he answered for you? I would love to hear. Comment below.

“Take delight in the LORD, and he will give you the desires of your heart.” Psalm 37:4


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Today, Facebook reminded me of a post that I wrote ten years ago today. It read:

Headed to South Haven, MI today. Once again makes me wonder,why do I live in Chicago? I am a beach girl.

When Facebook reminded me of that memory, I smiled and quietly thanked God. He moved me to the beach.

As I waited, for my Keurig to dispense my morning coffee, I thought about this further.Moving to the beach was something I desired. It was just something I wanted. It was not a need.

As I sat at my desk, sipping my coffee, I thought, If God took care of this want, he has the big stuff.Truthfully I needed this reminder. I think through my sickness,I haven’t forgotten or doubted this. God has my needs.

He has your needs too.

What do you need?

Ask God. He never gets tired of hearing from us.

“And my God will supply all your needs…” Philippians 4:19


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This past Friday, a friend and I connected through text. Because of the Chicago rains,her house had flood damage. Ugh! The May rains! Not fun!

We texted back and forth for the next several minutes and then she said something that struck me, “…you are a joy giver but don’t forget to let others bring you joy.”

Am I joy giver? Do I not allow others to bring me joy ?

The next day I received an expected card in the mail with the simple words Thinking of you . A soft smile came across my face .

Monday, I received a text from my dear college friend, Wendy, who I haven’t heard from in over a year. Just seeing her name across my screen, warmed my heart. I felt loved.

Today, I received a voicemail from a widowed client, saying she was enjoying reading a bible verse booklet I gave her years ago and wanted to let me know she was grateful to have it in the lockdown. Hearing her voice, I closed my eyes and was filled with gratitude and thought God is with me.

Kipper and I went for a walk and thought about joy .Three times in the last few days I was showered with JOY ! I am a lucky girl !

Can you despite this season of rain bring joy to others ?

Can you bring the joy to maybe one person this week? Or maybe two ?

Please share your ideas on how you bring the joy to others.

“The joy of the Lord is our strength.” Nehemiah 8:10


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I am sitting on a bench on my front deck and even though I am outside, I still feel contained. Dont we all?

As I take a bite of my cereal, my mind starts wondering and the flood gates open.
When will I be fully- healed?
When will I get married?
When will the lockdown be over?
I’m sure you have a WHEN.
I’ll be happy WHEN this happens…
I feel with the lockdown in place many of my friends and family feel we are all stuck in the hallway without the lights on, looking for the front door to open. We are stuck in the waiting.

I take another bite-full of cereal and it occurs to me that I have to stop thinking about the waiting and just be happy today. Maybe God is teaching me patience in the waiting ? Maybe he is preparing something better for me on the other side of the doorway as I wait.

Right now, we are all waiting for the lockdown to end, but what is God teaching us in this time of waiting?

Maybe patience ?

Maybe to trust him even though the hallway is dark ?

What is he teaching you ?

For me, I know he is saying,” I got you, Lisa. Just wait.”

God has you too. Trust the day to day, even when it is hard and yes, sometimes boring.

Be still and know that I am God.” Psalm 46:10


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This blog is deeply personal and from the heart. You  have been warned.

Today is my mom’s first birthday in heaven. I woke up and felt the heaviness of the day. I called my father and cried. I miss my mom.

I went for walk and remembered all the good things about her, especially all  the things she did for the Easter holiday. Even though we did not grow up with a lot, my mom made sure on Easter that me and my sister had a new Easter dress and my brothers had a new shirt or tie. It was more than the things she did but how she made us feel.

I will always remember her huge smile when she welcomed me with my own children into her and my dad’s home.

I loved watching her say with pride, ” I made pastichio .” as she overlooked a dining room table adorned in white linen and china, set perfectly for Easter. I loved seeing her face light up as she passed out homemade Easter baskets that she made for her eleven grandchildren. I loved watching her hug them as they said goodbye.

I walk up near the Mission cross, I miss my mom. IMG_0131

I look up to the sky and cry. Happy birthday, Mom!

I feel like I  can almost see her.  I imagine her looking down on me, smiling. Healthy. No longer in pain. I cried a little more thinking You’re with Jesus, mom. Lucky girl!IMG_0146

I look at the cross and reflect on the meaning. Because of Jesus’s death and resurrection. we all have a chance to go to heaven. We just have to believe.

I walked away thinking of the crazy world we live in today with shelter- in-place. Ugh, this would not have been good for mom.   I walk down the street and think Thank God there is a heaven Thank God you are there and not here. I miss you mom. Happy Birthday!

Today I am thankful for the Cross. Oh! that wonderful Cross.

 

 


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So as I write this from my front porch, attempting to feel connected with the outside world, the phrase that keeps replaying in my brain like a rollercoaster loop is “Day by Day.” This is torture.  I don’t know about you, but initially I woke up happy. I went for a run, showered, and cleaned house. All the normal routines of a normal Saturday but then the weight of reality set in. I’m sheltering-in-place. What can I do today?

I haven’t blogged in a while; not much to say, I guess. But today, I do have something to say. As I pound on my keyboard, I see a FedEx truck start unloading packages, mostly bearing the famous Amazon symbol and I think to myself, This is hard.

Being an extrovert, I miss people. I miss social gatherings. I miss going to yoga class. I miss swimming at the Y. I miss hiking or walking with friends. I miss a simple dinner out with a neighbor. I miss THE EASY!

I know for a lot of us, this is HARD! I think the hardest part is not knowing when it will end. If you love the torture of a rollercoaster, you know eventually the ride will be over. I am remembering my own kid’s births. Yes, the delivery was painful but I knew eventually it would be over and I would have a bundle of joy placed on my chest. So how do we not lose the joy?

This morning, while still tucked under the covers, I started rattling off to God a list.

Thank you for SLEEP! Thank you for sunny days. Thank you that Tarah is here. Thank you I can still go for walks.

It is so easy with the constant barrage of news, viral feeds, and endless Facebook posts, for our thoughts to go negative. Believe me, I have had my moments of THIS SUCKS! Sitting in my wicker chair I thought I would share some of my joys and things I’m thankful for instead:

~My daughter,Tarah, is here from New York. Thankful she is not THERE but HERE.  Her sense of humor gives me hard belly laughs, plus she likes to dance so most afternoons we throw on the music and have a “dance party” on the deck. And as you will see, as I am writing this post, Tarah’s silly antics of dancing on the deck, once again has me in stiches.IMG_0065

~I am thankful for my single ladies in my neighborhood who daily we text each other or walk by each other’s house and ask to visit with each other from the sidewalk to the front porch.

~I am thankful for puzzles, endless “movie nights”, feeling the sun on my face as I walk Kipper, and pulling weeds until my hand aches.

~I am thankful for this time to Zoom with college sorority sisters, Chicago friends, and my women’s bible study group. Seeing smiles of people I love never felt so good.( I do miss hugging, though.)

I take a sip of tea, and a couple walks by my house, stop, say hello, and introduce themselves. We exchange small talk and agree that the best thing about this social distancing is that people are becoming friendlier, kinder. We all agree that we should continue this long after the social distancing ends.

Day by day, I am hopeful this will end and we will get to the other side of this mess but in the meantime how do you not lose the joy?  Please share ideas, recipes, activities, things that you are thankful for. I would love to hear how you are coping… day by day. Hoping you find some easy joy!

Psalm 118:24 “This is the day that the Lord has made. Let us rejoice and be glad in it.”