Sunday, September 5, 2010

What Can I Do For You?

First Signs of Autumn Along the Curry Mountain Trail
GSMNP - September 4, 2010

The past few days have been wonderfully therapeutic for me.  Friday's quiet day at home and yesterday's hike in the mountains have restored my soul in a way I never thought possible in such a short period of time.  Today was the third Sunday in my church's Fall Festival of Renewal and Faith.  Our focus was on renewing your time.  I was in a small group that sang for our early service and then in the choir for the 11:00 service, so I got to hear the sermon twice and I'll have to say that it spoke to me deeply.   

I don't have a whole lot on my mind today and generally try to lessen the amount of time spent tied to the computer on Sunday, however,  there is something I would like from you.   Eight hours in the woods yesterday had me thinking again about how grateful I was for the support you have given me over the past few weeks.  Yes, we have hundreds of friends - the funeral home was filled to capacity for my FIL's service, but there was just something special about the quiet moments here in my den picking up the laptop and reading your words of comfort over and over.  If only there was some way that I could give back even a small part of that. I want to try..................

So as we start a new week with its gains and losses, ups and downs, triumphs and challenges, joys and sorrows, please leave a comment and tell me some very specific thing that needs to happen in your life this week for you to feel as if you're making progress in a forward direction.  Be as honest and specific as you are comfortable being.  If it has absolutely nothing to do with weight loss, that is perfectly o.k.  This is about your life and what is occupying first place in your mind as you look towards a new week. 

What do I plan to do with these comments?  First, let me tell you something I've probably never said before.  Every one of you is not just a face or symbol on my sidebar labeled "follower."  I've read your blogs, I know your stories, I know where you are (as close as you've shared on your profile page) and in case I forget, the highlights of your story are documented on a handy-dandy little spreadsheet I created that is updated every time a new follower pops up and I read their story.  First time commenters are more than welcome - I promise I'll check out your story too!

I plan to print your comments, post them in the privacy of my kitchen directly over the coffee pot and you will know that every morning this week sometime between 6:00 a.m. and 6:30 a.m.(EST), I will read your thoughts, remind myself  where you are and breathe a word of prayer that your day will go well and you'll make that forward progress.   I hope nobody minds that my support will come in the form of prayer.  Since I'm not able to offer my physical presence in the form of friendship, that's the form I believe crosses all the miles.

What do I need this week?  More strength to overcome the cycle of poor eating that is better than it was, but no where near the joyful habits I had cultivated over the summer and was sailing through with little effort or temptation.  I want that joy back.

I like this idea.  Please allow me the honor of supporting you in this way.  It might become a Sunday tradition.

So tell me, friends of mine.................. what very specific thing do you need to have happen in your life this week to feel as if you're making progress in a forward direction? 


  1. Oh Sharon, I love this idea! I will say a prayer for your needs this week (promise)!! What do I need, this week? I need to carefully follow the 21-day kickstart's first week's meal plans/menu, to give this new diet a proper chance. Thank you for praying for me and my efforts! I want you to get your joy back ... hugs!! xxox

  2. Sharon,
    I pray for my blog friends every day, but it is most often in a very general way. If I know of a situation specifically, like your FIL, I'll pray about that situation. I believe in the power of prayer, even for those that don't believe. Thank you for having the generosity of spirit to pray for special situations. With such a generous offer, I feel like a child in a candy store!

    Our anniversary is Saturday, the 11th, and I'd like to be back down to 173 by then. That is my lowest weight this summer. It would be difficult for me to meet this goal alone in just a week, but I know that with God's help it can be done.

    On a lighter note, I had considered making a spreadsheet of all the blogs I follow and tracking each one's progress. I hadn't yet, but maybe I will knowing that you have blazed that trail.

  3. That is a wonderfully generous offer that I can't refuse. Starting with tomorrow, I need five days of eating on program. The first five are the hardest. If I can get through those, I can start sailing.

    Gimme five, gimme five!!!

    I'll say a prayer for the return of your joy.

    Thanks, Sharon!

  4. Hi Sharon, I'm so glad you found some time to renew your soul (and hike) this weekend. I love your idea. For me, I start my BSF a week from this coming Thursday. It's an intensive Bible study with daily homework. I need to get my time priorities straight so that I can give it the attention it needs (that I need) and also meet my other obligations. I need a little oversight in time management from on high. Thanks!

  5. What an amazing woman you are:) I think we all welcome the support we have found out here; and every little bit helps. I need to have a good eating week, a week where I stay on track every day (except Thursday when I have dinner at my Mom's). I'm glad to hear you feel rejuvenated. I had wondered how the hike went.

    When I first started participating in my diet forum, I had to make a document to keep people straight. I have such a bad memory! I wish I could remember more of the little bits and pieces of blogger's lives.

  6. Sharon, what a kind and generous offer. I am considering leading a small group on discipleship and would cherish your prayers that I will hear God's clear leading. Along the same lines I am pondering what I should do spiritually blog-wise.

    Thank you so much.

  7. Hi Sharon: For me this week I need to remember to pray for those people that I know need those extra prayers. Often times in life, we hear a prayer request and say "I'll add you to my prayers" but then it may go undone (by me sometimes at least). So this week I am making a dedicated effort to pray for those folks I know need them most. After all, it is really the least I can do. Prayer always helps.

    Thanks for your wonderful blog post today. It was brilliant.

  8. :D Love this! I had come on here to give you an award--and will--and found that you are offering something much, much better to me. :D

    Like other commenters, I also pray for my fellow travelers, but your official offer to take specific prayer needs to the Father is really wonderful.

    Prayer need: I am having surgery on Wednesday--a lumpectomy. The doctor is certain it is benign, but wants to remove the lump since it is the kind that can become malignant in time. I am uncomfortable with the fact that I will be under anaesthesia. I had thought it would be a local. I won't know the time of surgery until Tuesday afternoon, but I expect that it will be early on Wednesday morning. Thanks. :)

    Okay. :) Now for the reason I'm here. You have earned an award. :) It is a little different from the typical blog awards in that it has nothing to do with blogs.

    It is called "Strength in the Storm" and is given to those who have weathered or are going through a difficult time while holding on tight to the Savior's hand. You certainly qualify.

    You do not need to do anything for the award except pick it up from my sidebar. You have already done all that is needed. If you want ot give it to others, you may do that, but you are not required to do so.

    To award it to others. You may award 3. You may pass the award out over whatever time period you need--there is no hurry to do it all at once. You can do it over years if you like. You just need to notify them on their comment page as I have done here rather than on your own blog and, of course, explain why they are receiving it.

    The award badge is on my sidebar. It is a pink flower on a green field with the words "The Joy of the Lord is My Strength" on it. You will see the words "Strength in the Storm Award" in a caption underneath.

    Just right click on the badge and "save as picture" then put it up on your blog. It is up to you whether or not you add the Award caption on the bottom.

    Sharon, you have truly shown your faith as you went through the difficult time of your FIL's illness and passing. Be blessed.

    If you have questions about the award, email me or ask on my blog. :)


  9. Sharon - What a caring heart you have. For me, I have two prayer requests. One is that I have started going to a small group and to be honest, I am kind of scared of putting myself out there in that way. The second one is for my work ethic. It has been suffering lately. There is a paper I absolutely must get feedback back to my student on.

  10. are one of the kindest and most caring comes through in your blogs every single day. I'm so touched that you would want to take the time for people you've never met. Thank you.

    I need prayer for two relationship with the Lord and that I would make for time for him. I can get so caught up in my day that I don't do this. And that leads to my second prayer request...which is to do a better job of balancing my time. I've felt pulled in too many directions lately and need to turn my heart back towards home, my family, and God.

    Thanks Sharon...I will be praying for you this week too. I hope that one day (maybe when I get stronger in hiking) that we can meet personally and go for a great hike together.


  11. You are a woman of God.

    I ask that you would pray that I would adjust to going back to a teaching schedule routine without eating as a response to stress.

    And, that I would continue to seek Him first, through the busy times that lie ahead.

  12. To All of You,

    I take all these concerns seriously and please know that each of you are in my thoughts every morning and often throughout the remained of the day. All of these concerns are from your heart and I wish for each of you, a week of peace.

    Fresh starts, time management, health issues, concerns for those you love, eating frustrations, fear of new situations, so many needs, so much on our hearts.

    Know that you have a friend in East Tennessee!