08 July 2011

SHARED BLESSINGS: The Journey Continued

“Gratitude bestows reverence, allowing us to encounter everyday epiphanies,
those transcendent moments of awe that change forever how we
experience life and the world.” - Sarah Ban Breathnach

July 1st marked the big day ... the start of a journey of SHARED BLESSINGS. My friend and I set out on a mission to thank God in all things; the little joys, the unexpected blessings, and yes, even the hardships, disappointments, and challenges (read the entire story - blog posted 6/27/11). I am already enjoying seeking the little things that normally go unnoticed in the busy-ness of my day – and in the process, I have found unexpected moments of pure joy and peace (that is a huge blessing in itself)!

Since I will be sharing tidbits of our journey in future blog posts, I thought it would be fun if you got to know a little about my traveling companion.

Meet my friend, Peggy New ...

Donna: I know you are currently living in South Carolina. Were you born and raised there?
Peggy: I grew up in Guatemala as the child of missionaries. My Dad rigged the first flush toilet in the village and the Indians used to come by to “visit” and ask to see how it worked. I was twelve when we returned “home” to the US. Having dual-citizenship I used to “threaten” I would choose to be Guatemalan instead of American. It was a rough transition.

D: Tell us about your family and your faith?
P: I attended Wheaton College and met my husband during orientation week! On August 18th, we will be married 38 years. As I look back on those 38 years (and 20 before that) I am awed by how present God was in everything I did, everywhere I was, and everyone I knew. He surrounded me with His grace. Without it I would be dead or locked up. Rick and I have 4 children and 5 grandchildren. Our son was killed in a car accident when he was a freshman in college; it changed our lives forever. It drew us closer to God and to each other in ways that would take countless words to share.

D: You have quite a unique business. Could you tell us a little about it?
P: Currently I am a recycle artisan! I take glass wine bottles and turn them into night lights. The process has been both educational and challenging, but I love what I do. I learned to use a diamond-tip drill bit and electric drill; how to paint palm trees and add unique decorations to make each bottle a one-of-a-kind creation. Of course, inserting lights to make them sparkle, adds the finishing touch. I participate in local (and not so local) art shows and festivals, and have even learned how to sell without taking refusal personally. It’s been a learning journey.

D: What are some of your other favorite things to do?
P: For some years I have interviewed people and written articles for a friend’s monthly magazines. I meet some fascinating people and learn so much. I also get to babysit my 7 year old grandson who loves baseball and all other sports. He’s a challenge sometimes and we can both be cranky in the late afternoon, but have learned the importance of a snack and space.

D: Would you like to share any other “words of wisdom?”
P: Our lives are composed of so many layers; so many interconnecting and concentric circles. It amazes me to think that God designed each of us and knows everything about us; I have trouble remembering my daughter’s favorite foods or colors!

D: I have shared with my readers that you and I would be traveling a road together.  And last Friday we began our journey - to recognize all of God’s blessings and record each wonderful gift in our journals. Any thoughts you’d like to share about our adventure?
P: In this season of my life I am re-learning gratitude and looking forward to practicing it with a friend. Practice makes perfect – yes?! Each day I look for something that fills me with gratitude and write it in my journal. As we exchange our journals every two weeks, and continue the process of recording our blessings, together we will share in each other’s lives. What will be the outcome? God knows and I am willing to journey along and see the changes it will cause in my life and the lives I touch. With a grateful heart – Peggy New.

It’s Friday, Let’s Sparkle ... action required ... I have been blessed to know Peggy for many years and there is still so much to be told about this beautiful woman of faith. She is active in her church and community, teaches at a local college, and in her spare time she reads and knits ALOT! A woman of many talents ... and everything she does reflects her love for the Lord. She has been a role model, a mentor, and a dear friend to me, and I thank God for bringing our paths together.

Is there someone in your life that you could embark on a “shared journey” with? Maybe it could be an adventure like Peggy and mine, a journey of Shared Blessings. If you are doing a Bible study together, why not record scripture verses in shared journals. Or if you pray together, a prayer journal would be a wonderful shared experience. Share your faith, hold each other accountable, encourage one another, and travel life’s road together on your spiritual journey – the possibilities are endless!

2 friends ...  journals ...  2,000 blessings

Count your blessings together ...
God’s Peace, Donna Weaver

“Two are better than one, because they have a good reward
for their toil. For if they fall, one will lift up the other.”
- Ecclesiastes 4:9-10

You can check out Peggy’s wine lights at - www.facebook.com/thewinelights


Maxine said...

Donna: As you know J and I are embarking on this same journey - we have already reached our 1000 blessing recorded in a book we pass back and forth to each other!! If is a beautiful way to see GOD in the small things, details of our lives!! Love you for doing this too!

Donna Weaver said...

Loved the idea when you shared it... we just added a 2nd journal so when we reach 2,000 blessings, we'll each have a journal to keep! We'll be making our first switch in about a week and I can't wait to read some of Peggy's blessings and start adding mine in her book... truly an adventure of three; God, Peggy, and me!