Why a blog from me, someone who has never been a writer, someone who has never been articulate or had a solid grasp of the grammar world. Because God told me to write. Several years ago a life storm invaded my family. God kept telling me to write it all down. I argued, but He would not let up. This went on every day for a couple of weeks until one day out of frustration, (I'd like to say it was out of obedience), I picked up a pen and paper and wrote for 7 hours straight! Do you think maybe I needed therapy and God knew it?

I've been writing ever since and have learned to love it! I started out sharing my stories with friends and family. I've now been published in a Nashville church paper, Our Daily Journey (a devotional site of RBC Ministries), PCCWeb Daily Devotional, Ruby for Women Ezine Magazine, and I am a contributor in the book Alabaster Jars, Life in Abundance Collection 2.

Why Ponderings? During this life storm, God led me to a pond in the woods behind my home. There He met me each time, teaching new lessons, reminding me of old ones, showing His presence and allowing me to feel His love through the surroundings of that pond. I found myself returning over and over to ponder, pray and praise. A healing of my heart took place and out of the experience came my first book, Ponderings From the Pond, then a second book, Ponderings From My Porch, and now a third book is in the works along with a memoir about my storm.

Why am I making myself so vulnerable? Because God has done so much that I cannot keep quiet. I have to share. Jesus's last words to his desciples were, "Go,tell." We are his disciples too and this is just one of my ways of telling.

I'm no scholar but I have heard God's voice in my spirit, experience His love daily, and have a desire for others to experience this also. I would love to share with all who visit and I would love to hear from you. If my sharing gets just one to ponder, to be quiet with the Father, to see and hear from Him or to be reminded of something from Him, then this is worth my vulnerability.

As you visit me, sometimes we will be at the pond, sometimes we will move to the front porch, and sometimes we will just be here, there, and yonder. Thank you for coming and please feel free to come back anytime, you are always welcome here.

May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, O Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer.

Psalm 19:14


My first book, Ya Know What I'm Say'n, has been released.



Sunday, February 19, 2012

Does a Gift Have to Have a Bow?

Good ol' Oswald Chambers!  He was one bright guy!  Here is what I read one day in his devotional, My Utmost For His Highest". . . "Anything that has even a hint of dejection spiritually is always wrong.  If I am depressed or burdened, I am to blame, not God or anyone else.  Dejection stems from one of two sources - I have either satisfied a lust or I have not satisfied it.  In either case, dejection is the result."
I really began to ponder on this.

Early in my marriage, I always felt dejected when my birthday rolled around, Valentines Day, or our anniversary and I didn't received a present all wrapped up and donning a bow.  To me, this just naturally showed love from the giver to the givee.  But as I learned long ago from another bright author, gift giving is not my husband's love language.  I learned that my husband's love language was "doing".  He cleans the carpets, fixes my lawnmower when it breaks down, keeps my car in good, safe working order, goes to the bridge when I want to deliver blankets to the homeless, and is willing to sit in a hospital waiting room after working all day so we can take an alcoholic in for help, and he does it all without ever complaining or grumbling.  I know this would be a gift to some ladies out there.  I learned to appreciate that but still on those special days. . .I may have been holding my breath just a little to only breath out deflated when no bow topped gift appeared.

Don't get me wrong.  It's not about the gift in the box.  It is the time one spends getting the gift, the thought put into it and know they were thinking of you enough to take the time to put it all together.  THAT is what I wanted and THAT is what I thought shouted out "I love you!"  I guess Oswald Chambers would say that is what I was lusting after.  That lust was not fulfilled and so dejection sets in. Even if I got a card or a nice dinner, dejection was still lying there underneath.

I've had to pray and lay those lusts, (I like the word expectations better) at the foot of the cross.  Now I smile and feel loved when I see my husband changing the oil in my car and checking the tires and any of the other 1000 things he does for me. I know he loves me, I have no doubts. He gives me gifts every day and I have learned to appreciate them. They just don't come with a bow and that's alright.

I have been married for 30 years.  I didn't learn this until around the 10 year mark. I wish I had learned this before I got married. If I could give a bride to be a gift, I would give her two books.  Actually there are many books I would want to give her, but for this post, I will mention two. . .

Love Languages by Gary Smalley
My Utmost for His Highest by Oswald Chambers

Is this a sign of maturity?  After 10 years, I could just hear God and Keith say, "It's about time!"  But both are too gentlemanly to say that :)

And the love I get from these two. . .
That needs no bow!


OK. . .after finishing this post I received a package in the mail.  I had to come back and share what it was.  It came just days before Valentine's Day and had my name on it.
I opened it up and found something I had seen on Katie Davis's (Kisses from Katie) website Amazima and had mentioned how neat it was.  It was a necklace made from the Ugandan Women.  The beads are made out of newspaper, but you would never know it.  The money for the jewlery all goes back to the Ugandan women to help them support their families.  I liked that idea.
Hubby ordered the red necklace.
It's beautiful to me, not just aesthetically, but because of who went to the trouble to order it and because of who made it.
Look for yourself. . .

and what's this. . .
I guess an old dog can learn new tricks ;)

linking with


Jennie Morgan said...

Ahhhhh SO glad Keith came through....and not really surprised at all!! He's such a wonderfully, godly man. You ARE truly blessed! But then...you already know that! Love you both!! Plus, Courtney would be thrilled as this is a "ministry" she is very passionate about! I have a bracelet she ordered for me from the Ugandan women.

ells said...

Oh love it...I can relate...I am married to the most kind...unselfish person I know...my family covered a lot of pain with big celebrations...over the top gifts...His family...simply loved each other...and simple gave gifts...so the times he would forget our anniversary..or a gift did not meet my "expectation" I would be hurt...than in God's mercy...He opened my eyes to see how Mark loves me everyday...does kind things..well anything for me...he tends to my heart...so now the pressure is off both of us...what a glorious freedom.
Like you...I wish I would have seen it sooner...
Love the necklace...love Katie Davis...

I Live in an Antbed said...

Oh how precious!!!!! What a thoughtful, beautiful gift. Thank you so much for letting us see it. :)

Lisa notes... said...

What a beautiful post. Thankfully for my husband, "gift giving" isn't one of my top love languages so he rarely has to buy a bow. But he may have it tougher because I like receiving gifts of service. :-)

But I like to give words. So I'll tell you that finding you here is a blessing to my day. I am learning to look for God's gifts in many different places, and I have found one here. Thank you.

Quiltingranny said...

I love the things without bows. The Dr. Pepper he brings me after he works all day. The unexpected rubber lizard the kids hide knowing I will find it during the day, the notes. Yes, 30 years here to and I have never worried about the bows and wrapping paper. Love the necklace! I have a hat made from women in Sierra Leone of recycled trash bags!

Jen Ferguson said...

Kris -- I know exactly what you mean! Deflated expectations, love languages, oh-I am so there. Love how y'all are still learning and loving 30 years later!

seashore said...

I can definitely relate to this so this is a very helpful reminder. Thanks for the book suggestions. I am just recently married and they look like great books. Thanks


What a sweet gift to receive with joy your husbands expressions of love through "doing." ... and then a little red necklace, too. Sweet.


Kim said...

I agree on Love Language for newlyweds. So much difficulty, hurt feelings and unmet expectations could be avoided by the basic understanding of what really makes our mate feel loved.

It always makes me laugh that we all tend towards showing the love through our language, a lot like trying to hold a conversation in English with a person in France, and being frustrated when they don't understand.

What a blessing your husband is, and that you see his gifts for what they are!

Denise said...

This was such a sweet post, bless you.

Nona said...

What a wonderful post. It's so hard to let go of the expectations in our lives to enjoy the blessings.

Rachel Wojnarowski said...

Great bow!! :)

Jen said...

I loved this post Kristin. This was a GREAT encouragement to me to look for "everyday gifts" that others give to me and are to me. Thanks for the reminder! I love the necklace, by the way. I have a bracelet just like it and I have been so inspired by the ministry Katie Davis is involved in.

Thanks for sharing your heart.


Jen said...

Oh, one more thing...

I LOVE that photo of the cardinal in the snow! Was that one that your husband took? Beautiful!!!!!

Kristin Bridgman said...

Wow! Thank you ladies for coming by, always love having you here:)

Jen, I took the bird in the snow picture. That cardinal comes by every day :)

Also, I come by to all your places but it seems if you don't have a pop-up window for comments, mine won't go through. I noticed when I changed mine to pop-up, I started getting many more comments.

Blessings to you all!

Cecilia Marie Pulliam said...

Seems all kinds of gifts found their way to your door! The best gifts are the ones you aren't expecting. Both God and my husband grace me with those on regular basis. It is wonderful to be loved. Great post, Kristin.