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  • Humble thanks.

    Laundry. Dishes. Vacuuming. I hate it. Just being real. There is no morning I wake up and say, “YEA! I get to do chores today!” I once read, “It is in the mundane that we find joy.” Mundane. How is that even possible?? Yet, I am reminded of John 3:30, “He must become greater and I must become less.” In a world of busy, how do I find that joy? How do I become less? It must start with peace. Peace. A state of tranquility, according to Merriam-Webster. A state of tranquility in ALL states, not just the GOOD. Making peace with the enjoyable in life is easy, and great. It is a lack of control, that skews my view of joy during the mundane. It is the type of thinking, in which I am introduced to the phrase, humble thanks. Ann Voskamp describes it as, “The humble live surprised.” One of the phrases that changed my life: Expectations are premeditated resentments. I expected life to be full of joy…all the time. So, the laundry, dishes, and vacuuming took the life and joy out of me. Events not going my way, sucked all the life out of me. But that is because I expected it to be hard, unrewarding, tedious, and tiresome. I looked at it in the wrong light. Enter humble thanks. A need to change my thinking and expectation, followed by a peace. If I live expectant, I miss the humble surprise. And that is what I find brings complete joy in this season of life. So, I try to remember to do everything with humble thanks, which brings me peace. The peace we are promised, surpasses all understanding. Humble Thanks. Expectant of peace. Loving the mundane. Surprises will abound with a humble, peaceful heart.

  • Got Patience?

    “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.” Galatians 5:22 Patience. As I write this, my two young daughters have been asking for Nutella toast. If you don’t know, Nutella is a hazelnut chocolate spread with a consistency similar to that of peanut butter. It’s one of their favorite treats. And it’s a mess. They see I’m busy, but they want it NOW. I stop what I’m doing. I help them spread the Nutella on their toast and what happens? It immediately gets dropped face down on the kitchen floor. A huge, sticky mess to clean up. Sigh. It’s not even 7:00am. I was supposed to have time alone to write and to be with the Lord. Instead, everyone woke up early and woke up hungry. And me? I’m struggling to have patience already. Truth be told, it happens often these days. Three children under eight. Stuck in the house. Bad news on all devices. Decision making fatigue set in months ago. Yep. These are trying times, to be sure. Maybe you’re a mama with children at home and you can relate. Or maybe you’re not and wish you were. Or maybe you’re in an entirely different set of challenging circumstances. No matter what life circumstances you’re walking through today, I’m guessing your patience has been tested at some point during 2020. For me, patience is the bedrock of the fruits of the Spirit. On a daily basis, I try to survey my life for the fruits of the Spirit. A sort of litmus test to keep myself accountable. Am I walking with the Lord? Is this decision based in faith? How am I doing? I can usually find tiny scraps of love and maybe a few of the others buried deep in my heart. But patience? When I have no patience, my loved ones cannot see much fruit in my life. They cannot see the deep love and joy in my heart. They cannot see the peace of Christ. Kindness and gentleness and self-control? Nowhere to be found. Patience is the boat that carries all the other fruits. So what do I do? If you’re like me, most of the strategies I used for dealing with stress were taken away about Mid-March this year. Run to Target? Go to dinner with a friend? Send the kids to their {fill in the blank} activity and have a coffee and breathe? Nope. Nope. Nope. God has shown me how much I was depending on myself and my own quick fixes before March of this year. I feel him calling me to deeper faith and reliance on Him alone. But honestly, I’m not sure how to get there. I need specific steps. Here is what I have been trying lately. 1. Stop what I’m doing. Breathe for at least 10 seconds. 2. Stop what I’m doing. Get a glass of ice water or a non-caffeinated beverage. 3. Stop what I’m doing. Give a hug. 4. Stop what I’m doing. Pray. 5. Stop what I’m doing. Read the Bible. Notice a theme? When I am at the end of my patience, I need a hard stop and I need God. Nothing else truly gets at the root of the problem. If I can get myself to stop, I usually need a couple of other calm down aids, like breathing or a glass of water, to signal to my brain that its time to rely on God. I’m learning new strategies. I wish I was mature enough to just stop and pray first thing. Some days that does happen. But more often than not, I have to calm down first to remember the steps to get to God- prayer and scripture reading. Can anybody relate? I’m curious. How to you find your way back to God when you’ve come to the end of your patience? What helps you? Would you be willing to share? Saying a prayer this prayer for you today: Dear Lord, Please bless my sister. Grant her patience and all the fruits of the Spirit. Help her stop when she needs to be near you. Help her to feel your presence in her life and to remember the words of Jesus to “Let not her heart be troubled (John 14:1).” Help her to know how deeply she is loved and that she is not alone. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen

  • What is your Mindset?

    Researcher Carol Dweck says we have 2 types of mindsets: fixed mindset and growth mindset. In my days as a curriculum coordinator, I studied much of Dweck’s research. It was fascinating. Our job as educators, was to cultivate a growth mindset. Fixed Mindset: Intelligence is static. Growth Mindset: Intelligence can be developed. These two mindsets are determined by the type of environments you are in, what you feed your brain, who you surround yourself with, and many other factors. Dweck goes on to say, “For twenty years, my research has shown that the view you adopt for yourself profoundly affects the way you lead your life.” How are you leading your life? I am trying an experiment this week: I took Facebook off my phone. For the past few days, I have found myself peaceful, thoughtful and not having FOMO (Fear of Missing Out!). Instead, I have enjoyed more quiet time, focused behavior, and quality time with my family. Coincidence? Maybe. But I would like to believe it is a change in my mindset. A handful of us have been working through Jennie Allen’s study, Get Out of Your Head. Our minds go through many spirals of emotions, to thoughts, to behaviors, to consequences. It has been a great study to see just how what we put into our heads can lead us astray. The enemy can crush us with one negative thought. Enter the ‘THOUGHT FORMULA’ Jennie shares. (Negative Emotion), and (reason), so I will (choice). Example: I’m upset, and I was passed over, so I will choose to remember that God has not forgotten me. So, what are you letting take over your mind? What mindset do you choose to have? I encourage you this week, to try something different. Feed your intelligence and grow! Get Out of Your Head: https://www.jennieallen.com/gooyh Carol Dweck: https://www.brainpickings.org/2014/01/29/carol-dweck-mindset/

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  • Women | Hagar's Heart

    The Facts What does domestic violence look like in DFW? What is domestic violence? It is more then just a black eye. The Hh Response See what we are doing to fight the cycle of abuse. How can you help Ways to donate and volunteer. 7 The average number of attempts made to leave an abuser permanently. DONATE NOW Hagar's Heart is the GO-TO nonprofit in the DFW Metroplex, supporting women in domestic violence shelters with self-care support. Join Our Email List! Scroll through 2020! To play, press and hold the enter key. To stop, release the enter key.

  • In the Media | Hagar's Heart

    We love sharing Hagar's Heart with the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex. Together we can make a difference in the lives of women in crisis. In the Media Real Stories of Real Women KIMIYA International OCTOBER 16, 2020 ​ Arlington's Hagar's Heart Gives Women Overwhelming Encouragement ​ ​ ​ ​ The Jennifer Hargrave Show OCTOBER 20, 2020 Jennifer Jones shares her personal story of how she came to recognize the need of domestic violence victims to feel seen and worthy. Hagar's Heart inspires women and provides hope for women in unpredictable situations. Learn more about Hargrave Family Law. ​ SHOUTOUT DFW MARCH 10, 2021 ​ We had the good fortune of connecting with Jennifer Jones and we’ve shared our conversation here. ​ ​ ​ ​ Would you like to share HH? Contact our Founder, Jennifer Jones, at jennifer@hagarsheart.org . ​ ​ ​ ​ ​ ​

  • PARTNERSHIPS | Hagar's Heart

    Partners Hagar's Heart serves women in the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex. We cannot thank our shelter partners enough for believing in our mission: helping HH connect women in a community and inspire women to rediscover how they are seen, valued, and loved.

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