Heart Choices: 2011-07-10 -->

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Midnight in Paris

I'd seen the trailer for the movie "Midnight in Paris".  It appealed to me, especially since I'm such a romantic.  And I've so many wonderful memories since Greg and I have visited Paris.

Take a look ...

So yesterday I decided to go to the movies by myself.  Harkins Theaters, here I come ...

I found myself seated next to a retired teacher who also came alone.  :)

The movie is about a writer who is in Paris with his fiance and her parents.  Gil (the writer) is played by Owen Wilson.  He is clearly different from his fiance in his desires and personality.  He is a romantic at heart and loves to walk the streets of Paris.  In the process, he is transported back to Paris in the 1920's where he meets many of his literary heroes like Ernest Hemingway and Pablo Picasso.

I remember walking the streets of Paris with Greg.  It was such fun to sip a cup of coffee in a cafe along the Champs-Elysees, purchasing a baguette and placing it under my arm, taking the train to Giverney to see Monet's home and gardens.

I have a question for you:

What would you do if you could go back in time and live in a world that you thought was better than your own?

I am a romantic.  I have a tendency to daydream.  At times, I long for a time when life wasn't so complicated; a time when people sat and had coffee and ...were not in a rush.

Technology has changed things; some good and some not so good.  I feel sad when I see some parents pick up their child who has spent most of the day at school with a cell phone in their ear.  Or they may be so busy texting that they miss the cries of their child longing to be hugged.  Btw, not all the parents are like this (just a few).

It seems that everyone is too busy today.  With long to-do lists, are we missing out on the NOW?

Of course, there are things that are necessary but over commitment is something I see all too often.  

This morning Greg and I sat outside at 5 am and watched the bunnies and quail interacting in the backyard as we sipped our morning coffee.  Being quiet and being in the NOW; how quaint.

So are you longing for a time when life was more simple?

Or will you consider taking a look at how you spend your time in this life NOW?  

It's something to think about ...

Blessings and love,


Faith to Enter In

Photo Credit: beautiful-places.com

When I think of entering in to rest, an environment like the one pictured above comes to my mind.  Tiburon, California; a place where my husband Greg and I got engaged many years ago.

My body and flesh long for a season of rest.  A time to sit and reflect.  And it would be preferable if this time included something with a view of the water.

Another Rest

There is a promise for believers to enter in to the rest of God.   It is a present REST.

Hebrews 4: 1-3 says:
"Therefore, since the promise of entering his rest still stands, let us be careful that none of you be found to have fallen short of it.  For we also have had the gospel preached to us, just as they did; but the message they heard was of no value to them, because those who heard did not combine it with faith.  Now we who have believed enter that rest ..."

Who were the people who had fallen short because they didn't combine it with faith?  It was the Israelites who had the faith to believe and leave Egypt with Moses.  But they didn't have the faith to enter the Promised Land because of unbelief.  Fear got the best of them, except for Joshua and Caleb.  So they stayed in the Wilderness for forty years.

God is calling us to enter His rest NOW.  Yes, I know that one day when I die I will be in heaven.  But what about today?  I had the faith to believe the Gospel message of salvation.  Jesus died for my sins and paid the penalty so I can be in a right relationship with God.

But in the meantime, life is hard.  As I continue to study Hebrews, I long to truly enter His rest NOW.

  • Instead of working in my own strength, I chose to trust Jesus to work in me and through me.  
  • Instead of looking at all the giants in my life, I focus on Jesus who works all things together for my good.
  • Instead of being fearful, I believe the promises of God.
Sometimes believing can be hard.  If you've had disappointments in life or people have let you down, it can be easy to be distrustful.

But God is different.

He is trustworthy.

He is faithful.

He is sufficient.

I do not want to harden my heart.  I want to have faith to believe and to trust God.  I want to enter in to the rest of God.  I want to submit my will to His Will.  As His Word speaks to my heart, I choose to believe.

I'm jamming with Bonnie of Faith Barista on the topic of FAITH.


Blessings and love,


WFW ~ Weary?

It's Word-filled Wednesday and I'm linking up with Internet Cafe Devotions.

Do you ever feel weary?  Is your schedule so overloaded and you feel you have no time?

This photo was taken by my godchild Michael's wife Christine.  These are their two precious daughters who fell asleep in the car after a busy day.

Yes, a nap can be helpful at times.

But why not give your heavy burdens to the Lord?  

He is so much more able to help us as we face challenges in life.

Blessings and love,


Happy Birthday Steve

My brother Steve is celebrating his 60th birthday today.  Where has the time gone?

I can still remember celebrating his 9th birthday!  This black and white photo was taken in our backyard when we lived in Kings Park, NY.

Steve is the birthday boy, the baby is my sister Christine and I am pictured sitting beneath where my mom is standing.  The birthday guests are the Braatens who are all grown up now.

Steve and I were very close growing up.  We are 18 months apart.  And yes, he is older than me!

We had our moments but most of the time we got along well.

This photo was taken in front of our house in Lindenhurst, NY.  This is where we lived during most of our grade school and high school years and consider it our home town.

We've both grown up since that time and we live in different states now; he is Florida and me in Arizona.  But between phone calls, visits and Facebook ...we manage to keep tabs on each other pretty well.

Steve celebrated last night with his wife Barbara and friends and family.  I wish I could have been there but I know they had a fun time.  That's what happens when the Sumstad's get together.

Steve's pride and joy are his daughters, Kristin and Katie.  Here he is walking Kristin down the aisle at her wedding to Kevin last September.

Me and my brother
So, I'm wishing Steve a wonderful birthday and many blessings in this coming year.

Blessings and love,

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