In Others’ Words: Answers

 

Remember when you were in school and sometimes — oh, happy day! — the answers to the math problems were in the back of the textbook?

Of course, copying the answers was cheating. And doing so didn’t help you master algebra or geometry … but you did finish your homework a lot faster.

I haven’t stumbled across any book that has the answers to life’s questions in the back — although I have read one that has answers found throughout its pages.

I’ve also discovered some “life answers” through the years. Here are a few:

  1. Women, we need our girlfriends. It may take us a few years to figure out just who the trustworthy friends are, but we need to do that … because life is richer (and easier) with our girlfriends.
  2. If at first you don’t succeed … lower the bar. I know, I know, you all think the proper way to finish that statement is “If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again.” Fine, go ahead and try again — but lower the bar first, especially if you’re aiming at perfection. Give yourself a decent chance at success, which means not setting yourself up for failure.
  3. “No” is a good word — and sometimes it is the best word. But you still have to use it sparingly.
  4. God is real … but he’s not pushy. A lot of people who say they know God are fake … and pushy.

In Your Words: We all have learned answers through our individual life lessons. I’ve shared some of mine today. I’d love to hear some of yours. If you could put an answer in the back of the book of life, what would you write?

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28 Comments

  1. Terri Tiffany
    November 16, 2012, 4:54 am   /  Reply

    My biggest one is to never say never and be prepared for change

    • Jeanne
      November 16, 2012, 7:15 am   /  Reply

      I so agree. I learned the hard way that if I said, “I’d never…..” I found myself doing just that thing. Being prepared for change is always good.

    • November 16, 2012, 7:27 am   /  Reply

      When I was in college, I *mentioned* to God that I was thankful I didn’t live in New Brunswick.
      Hahaha!

      Guess where I live?

      • Beth Vogt
        November 16, 2012, 12:59 pm   /  Reply

        Um … New Brunswick … ?

        • November 16, 2012, 1:02 pm   /  Reply

          8 minutes outside the capital city.
          BUT, free and easy access to cheap LOBSTER 24/7.

      • Jeanne
        November 16, 2012, 1:11 pm   /  Reply

        He-he! 🙂

    • Beth Vogt
      November 16, 2012, 12:57 pm   /  Reply

      I concur with the “Never say never” Terri — and be prepared for change flows from that.

  2. Roxanne Sherwood Gray
    November 16, 2012, 5:05 am   /  Reply

    My brain hasn’t kicked in yet, and I’m sure I’ll think of something wonderful later today. The first thing that pops into mind is: “Give yourself–and everyone around you–a lot of grace.” I lost someone very precious and afterward had a lot of dark days. Our society doesn’t wear special clothes or even armbands for mourning. People in the grocery store or dentist office or wherever have no way of knowing what’s going on in other people’s lives. Maybe the grumpy person in line ahead of you just received a bad diagnosis, maybe their dog ran away, maybe someone died. I think we need to be nicer to ourselves and more forgiving to one another.

    • Beth Vogt
      November 16, 2012, 12:57 pm   /  Reply

      So true, Roxanne. So true.

  3. November 16, 2012, 6:28 am   /  Reply

    Instead of saying no outright, I’ve learned to say, “Let me pray about it.” Then I do, asking God to show me what He wants me to do.

    • Beth Vogt
      November 16, 2012, 12:58 pm   /  Reply

      You are so wise, Pat. I keep learning this about you over and over again.

  4. Jeanne
    November 16, 2012, 7:21 am   /  Reply

    I’ve learned that God is trustworthy and steady. He’s shown me that through the trials I’ve walked through. He’s always there to comfort me when life throws me unexpected curve balls.

    I’ve also learned that words of grace are much more effective than harsh or angry words. Now if I can use them more consistently when my kids are pushing my buttons. For the tenth time in a day. 🙂

    Oh, and so true about needing our girl friends. My husband learned that early in our marriage. 😉

    • Beth Vogt
      November 16, 2012, 12:58 pm   /  Reply

      🙂
      Nothing like girlfriends. (Yep, repeating myself.)
      And it’s true … the tenor of our words is so, so important.

  5. November 16, 2012, 7:26 am   /  Reply

    Cherish your body when you’re a twenty-something. Listen to your gut instinct! Do NOT get on that horse on August 19th, 1983!!!!! You WILL almost die. You will!
    Now, fast forward to now.
    Feel better?
    I knew you would.

    • Beth Vogt
      November 16, 2012, 12:59 pm   /  Reply

      Oh, the whole topic of horses?
      Sheesh … I would need of list of multiple dates for “Do not get on that horse.”

  6. November 16, 2012, 8:33 am   /  Reply

    Worrying about what you can’t control does nothing except give you ulcers. 😉

    • Beth Vogt
      November 16, 2012, 12:59 pm   /  Reply

      And more worry.

  7. November 16, 2012, 8:44 am   /  Reply

    Jesus first. In everything. When our focus is upon Him, our vision becomes clear.

    • Beth Vogt
      November 16, 2012, 1:00 pm   /  Reply

      Beautifully said.

  8. November 16, 2012, 8:57 am   /  Reply

    When you don’t know which direction to go, consult your dream.

    • Beth Vogt
      November 16, 2012, 1:00 pm   /  Reply

      Absolutely love this.

  9. November 16, 2012, 9:36 am   /  Reply

    Question: Why is this such a constant battle to have and to hold who I am and what I want? Why do I feel enslaved to wants, pressures, methods of control, methods of seeking happiness, methods for succeeding, methods for being at peace with me and with God?

    Answer: Surrender brings freedom.

    I, the poster child for control and obstinacy, generated by the typical dysfunctions that cause fears and that kind of need to be in control, have had to learn (The Hard Way, naturally) that the one thing I hate and fear the most, Surrender, is the one thing I need to do in order to be free of a tightly controlled yet unsatisfactory life and myriad personal shortcomings. That God wasn’t kidding when he said to deny yourself, take up your cross and follow him. That giving him my life to him in its entirety SEEMS illogical to a control freak, but is actually surprisingly freeing and by far the best way to go. I just have to be reminded of this often and with the help of 1. Girlfriends, 2. Lower expectations, 3. Just Saying No (to myself most of all) and 4. Letting my loving Creator and Maker of the Universe have his infinitely more wise way in my life.

    These are only the answers in MY book, sorry. Probably just a hair too specific to be of use to anyone else. 🙂

    • Beth Vogt
      November 16, 2012, 9:51 am   /  Reply

      Camille,
      I love you.
      Absolutely love you.

      • November 16, 2012, 10:04 am   /  Reply

        Oh. I think you just made my entire day. Yes, in fact, I’m sure of it. Ditto, lovely lady. And let me add that you inspire me in leaps & bounds. Thank you so much for all you do!

  10. November 16, 2012, 10:31 am   /  Reply

    I love your Answers, Beth. Lots of wisdom there.

  11. November 16, 2012, 12:51 pm   /  Reply

    Respect goes a long way in any circumstance: job, marriage, children, friendships. Always respect others and always be sure you are living in such a way that you will be respected.

    • Beth Vogt
      November 16, 2012, 1:01 pm   /  Reply

      Wonderful insight, Carol.

  12. November 16, 2012, 1:22 pm   /  Reply

    I love the one about girlfriends. For a long time, I didn’t have close friends because of the other part you mentioned. I wasn’t good at choosing trustworthy people. Thankfully that changed. Today, girlfriends are right there with my husband, kids and new puppy (and chocolate) on my can’t-live-without list!

    So happy you’re one of them. 🙂 Love ~

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