Monday, January 24, 2011

* Sparkle Shoes *

     There I stood….in the shoe section of a local department store…facing my greatest temptation of the week….sparkle shoes.  Now these weren’t just slightly sparkly.  No.  These were covered….covered….in glitter!  Multi-colored glitter covered pumps….with 5 inch heels…and a platform at the base which was, you guessed it, covered in glitter!  A kaleidoscope of purples, silvers, grays, pinks & whites held my attention.  “Size 8, please,” I said hopefully to the sales gal.  She returned with a shiny purple box.  “I only have a 9,” she replied.  I tried to act casual.  “Oh that’s OK…I’ll just try them on,” I retorted.  
     Now, I was wearing my black fuzzy socks.  You know the kind, you them wear when it’s freezing outside and you want to feel a bit pampered.   Hmmmm….oh well….I pulled the glorious glitter pumps out and put them on anyway.  Fabulous!!!  Fantastic!!!  Oh I really loved them!  I walked around.  Women everywhere were commenting.  “Wow!”  “Beautiful!”  “I love those!”  “Where did you find those?”  I knew.  They had that something special. 
     Now it just so happened that it was my birthday that day.  I planned to go out with my husband and a few friends that evening to celebrate.  It was definitely the perfect time to wear sparkle shoes-birthday shoes!  I had the sales gal hold them for me….just in case. 
     As I pondered the purchase of these impractical, spike-heeled, glittery shoes, I glanced outside.  It was about -20 degrees, the wind was blowing hard and it was starting to snow.  The parking lot was filled with piles of dirty slush and cars slid by on icy patches, spraying bits of dirt and grime up on the people who walked by.  I sighed.  I couldn’t do it.  I couldn’t put those shoes through that kind of torture.  To be made to skid and slop through such muck.  To become covered in snow….frozen…then simply stomped on to remove the mess.  To be….oh dear…dirty & dull!  No.  Besides, they wouldn’t truly fit me unless I wore those thick, fuzzy black socks.  They were too big!  They deserved much better than that.
      I returned to the sales gal and told her to put them away on a safe, warm shelf in their purple, shiny box. I walked away.   
     Maybe someday I’ll find those glittery shoes…in my size…and I'll buy them!  Maybe you’ll get to see them.  Until then, I'll remember them fondly.  They were...and are…quite spectacular! :)   
     So am I being vain to admire and desire fancy shoes?  I don't know!  It's fun  to try something a little different...a little wild...a little glittery.  I love to be a woman!  Women are beautiful!  We have so many wonderful gifts.  We nurture, love, support, pray, give, encourage, praise, and uplift others.  We smell nice, we smile, we giggle, we are colorful and somewhat unpredictable. How fun!  I think even a Proverbs 31 woman would dare to wear spiky purple glitter shoes.  Why not?  In fact, here are some bejeweled verses...about rubies and fine linen...and purple! 
     Proverbs 31:10-11"A wife of noble character who can find?  She is worth far more than rubies.  Her husband has full confidence in her and lacks nothing of value.      
       v. 21-22 When it snows, she has no fear for her household; for all of them are clothed in scarlet.  She makes coverings for her bed; she is clothed in fine linen and purple."    
     I think that's a good start.  (You can read all of Proverbs 31 if you like.)  I know I don't live up to the ideal Proverbs 31 woman...yet...but that's ok!  I'm a work in progress!  So are you!   I hope you know how beautiful you are.  God loves the way he created you.  You are a beauty...a gem...more dazzling than a sky full of stars!  May you embrace that inner and outer loveliness He bestowed on you.  Hey, and if you feel like walking around in some glittery high heels, do it!  It's kinda super fun! :)

Thursday, January 20, 2011

"If You're Happy & You Know It..."

"If you're happy and you know it, clap your hands!
If you're happy and you know it, clap your hands!
If you're happy and you know it, then your face will surely show it!
If you're happy and you know it, clap your hands....!" if you don't know it?  What then?  Are YOU happy?  Does your face show it? 
          I am convinced that many of us don't know if we are happy.  We want to be.  We crave it.  We achieve those happy feelings at times; we clap and smile....and later...we may feel guilty about it!  Crazy.

~>"He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the human heart; yet no one can fathom what God has done from beginning to end. I know that there is nothing better for people than to be happy and to do good while they live. That each of them may eat and drink, and find satisfaction in all their toil—this is the gift of God."  

Ecclesiastes 3:11-13 <~

     I encourage you today to find at least one thing that brings you joy! It may be a friend or loved one.  It may be an image of beauty that surrounds you.  It could even be a trinket or a treat!  Perhaps it's a favorite scripture or a song.  Whatever can draw your mind to the positive side...focus on it for just a bit!   Bring a smile to your pretty face!  Coax a happy tear or two from your eye!  Hum or sing loudly!  Savor a moment!  Close your eyes and dream!  
       When my kids are extra grumpy I tell them to "...Smile ALL of your teeth..."  It's pretty funny to see them going through the motions, drawing their lips back and baring those pearly whites , more like a growl than a smile.  "...ALL of your teeth...,"  I'll repeat.  The lips go farther back and the gums begin to show.  "Perfect!"  I exclaim.  Then we have to laugh.  The grump vanishes and the silly child emerges!   

     You should try it if YOU feel especially grumpy one day.  Look in the mirror.  Smile BIG.  Show ALL of those pearly whites.  Smile harder.  Let your gums show.  I KNOW you'll smile for real.  Maybe giggle a little.  The grump will vanish and your silly little child will emerge.  What a joy you are!  I hope you know you are a treasure....a perfect creature...filled with creativity and talent and endless possibilities!   Be encouraged today and...if you're happy....and you know it... CLAP YOUR HANDS!!! 

Friday, January 14, 2011


Here I am at last!!!  After lots of encouragement, I have decided to start a blog!  Who will "follow" me?  Who knows?  I plan to share lots of ideas, insights, and inspiration!  Come and follow me!  :)  

Genesis 3:18: ..."Both thorns and thistles it shall bring forth for you, and you shall eat the herbs of the field..."

My inspiration for "THiStLeBiTs" is truly based on personal experience with thistles.  A few years ago, my husband and I, along with our 4 children, bought some land (10+ acres of prairie) and moved a large church building onto the property to renovate into our home. ("The Church-house") It's been a few years and the project is not yet finished....probably never will be! 

 As the projects on the inside of the house languished, I spent time planting gardens around our home. I became a ditch-hopper, braking my truck at the slightest glimpse of color in the roadside ditch, jumping out with my small shovel to dig up a clump of flowers, then speeding off!  I salvaged plants, like my wonderful hydrangeas, from old buildings, coaxing the "starts" of the roots into small, sturdy bushes.   

Unfortunately, as I worked to till, hoe, and dig, the thistles in the prairie waged war on me!  They attacked the freshly seeded lawn, spiking their way up and spreading out.  They wove through the rows of the potager, fighting with my organic greens...and winning!  They thrust their way up through the neatly mowed trails, which wound around our property.  I wanted blood!  Thistle blood!!!  I hoed them, raked them, sprayed them, dug them, sliced them, and boiled them.  They returned.  I thought about them day and night.  How would I win?  How could I beat this adversary?  I prayed...."Please God, give me a beautiful garden, full of color, full of birds and bees, full of life!  Oh, and please kill those nasty thistles!"  

I picked out plants to accent my terracotta home...white, lavender, green.  Lovely!  Still the thistles returned.  One day I hiked along a path, wearing flip flops.  Prickly leaves poked my toes and heels as I went.  "Grrrrrr."  Suddenly, I rounded a bend and looked out across the prairie toward my house.  Glory!  I couldn't believe it!  The colors jumped out at me...whites, lavenders, greens!  A huge, amazing garden, filled with birds, bees, & life!  The thistles rose to the top, over the clover & over the yarrow.  They stood proudly showing off their purple tones.  They were beautiful!  I knew that God had answered my prayer but differently than I expected.  

I had beauty all along but there was a cost.  Prickles.   I learned a great lesson that day.  I had been dwelling on the discomfort caused by the abundance of these thistles, the whole time missing out on the beauty they possessed.  I wanted vitality, color & life in the confines of my gardens.  The whole time, I was surrounded by exactly what I wanted...yet never noticed! 

 I want to see the beauty around me.  Even during the struggles (the prickles) of my life, I want to turn a corner, lift my eyes, and see the glory that is surrounding me.  I must only take the notice!   


 A thistle as a whole is intimidating. However, if you take the time to avoid the prickles and notice the "bits", you'll experience true beauty!  Who or what is a thistle to you right now?  Focus on just one good bit of that person or thing.  You may be surprised to find that there is beauty there....a wonder to behold...!

*~* Debbie *~*