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Archive for the ‘Simple Skills’Category

Q: Pam, your newest book is Discovering Hope in the Psalms. What was one of your darkest moments and how did you get through it?

lighthouse matt vs bible artA: Lighthouses are special to our family. Our youngest son proposed to his wife at a lighthouse. We live on a boat so lighthouses are a beacon of hope to us in the fog or squalling sea. God’s word is that same kind of lighthouse, a beacon of hope to guide is into safe harbor during the storms of life.

In my new book, Discovering Hope in the Psalms, I share one of our stormiest seasons and how God’s lighthouse of hope helped us navigate our perfect storm. The winds first hit our little lifeboat during one of our media tours. Bill wasn’t feeling well, so we went to the ER where a doctor informed him he had high blood pressure. That news caught Bill’s attention. His dad had a stroke in his 40s that paralyzed half his body and Bill’s grandfather died of a stroke in his late 40s. Soon it became apparent that God was asking Bill to resign from the lead pastor role he had served in for 15 years. This decision was difficult emotionally and financially. In this same season, our youngest son, Caleb, was hit in a football game and rushed to the hospital where he needed a blood transfusion to save his life. Eight days later, when we brought Caleb home, all I wanted to do was to wrap him in my arms, but I had a speaking engagement, which our family needed me to keep.

During my time away, I received calls about my other two sons who had both also experienced athletic injuries. Then I got a call that my younger brother was hospitalized after having a heart attack, and could I come help with his family. My stress was welling up like a tidal wave.

joy comes in the morningWhen friends would ask, “How are you?” I didn’t know how to answer. So I went to the Word and read Psalm 30:5, “Weeping may tarry for the night, but joy comes with the morning.” JOY! That’s what I needed. I immediately went on a joy hunt. I read Nehemiah 8:10, “The joy of the Lord is your strength,” and kept following the well-lit path of joy verses. I printed them, studied them, and hung them around my home. Joy became my lighthouse of hope, an anchor in a storm that lasted three years.

Since that day I found hope in the Psalms, I answer the, “How are you?” questionJoyful with “Choosin’ joy!” Responding that way helped me immensely as it kept my focus on God, His power and His willingness to put joy in my heart no matter what life brought my way. Amazingly, this saying has caught on with thousands of women who have heard me share my story of hope. That’s the power of the Word. The joy that becomes the lighthouse for your journey lights the way for those around you also. May the God of all hope continue to multiply your joy!

Join Pam’s online Bible study using Discovering Hope in the Psalms (Register here/ Order book here)

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08 2017

Simply UNSHAKABLE

I have been thinking and praying about what it means to live UNSHAKEN, I can’t help but marvel at how God has come through for us this past year, which has  been one of the most challenging in our 37 years of marriage. It is common for couples to have at least one very strenuous season of life and this year has been our turn. Bill’s folks are 87 and are showing signs of aging physically, emotionally and socially. Bill also discovered an unfortunate trend in his family. It turns out that couples in his heritage tend to break relationship with their parents shortly after they get married.  Bill and his brother, however, came to Christ as high school students and were the first of their family to follow Jesus. Part of God’s work has been to maintain a relationship with his folks guided by appropriate boundaries and deliberate interactions. The result today is my wonderful husband has chosen to be the main caregiver (we are the only ones who live in So Cal where mom and dad reside). It is inconvenient, however, since we live 3 hours from them! After making this trip too many times, we decided to relocate to protect Bill’s health and better care for his folks. It sounded very simple. We would  sell our home, downsize significantly and move nearer. But the sale of our beautiful San DiegoRollercoaster home was been an eleven month rollercoaster ride of offers that have fallen through for one reason or another. We have both wrestled with the stress, dealt with the disappointment and pursued a partnership rather than blame each other. We know that many couples fracture their relationship during these seasons of high stress and we wanted to use this time of life to grow closer and more in love.

Simple Skills golden ruleWe found the “SKILLED” acrostic from 7 Simple Skills for Every Woman: Success in Keeping it All Together  to be of great help in remaining UNSHAKEN during  this midlife mayhem.

Steadfast – When we focused on being RELIABLE, trust would be built and doors of opportunity were opened. While we waited to see what God WOULD DO for our future we CONTINUED TO DO what we knew was his will, which included writing books and blogs, articles and advice for social media. Here is a note we received on our Facebook page:

Hello from Costa Rica

My name is J….  a young boy who has read your book, I’m 20, and I want to thank you for sharing with us that important information about the Waffles and Spaghettis. As a testimony, I didn’t grew up with my father, and it was difficult for me to understand how to be a real man and why I have to take my role and responsibility on the relationship. I was frustrated because my girlfriend was doing things that I couldn’t understand. I was feeling  dumb, but one wise pastor who came from USA to my church was talking about your book, so I did it.  I’ve read it and my whole life has changed. I admire you guys, all what you do and how God uses your knowledge to bless people like me. I love my girlfriend so much. Thanks to you I can understand her better and we are hoping to get marriage in the next 2 years.

Knowledgeable – We made it our goal to  become a little WISER each day so we could make sound plans that would render positive results.

       Over these difficult few years, I began a new quiet time tradition of what I call “Creative Biblical Expressions” or others call Bible Art Journaling. I dig into a passage, then draw out its meaning in my journal or Journaling Bible. This new spiritual rhythm has helped me relax and recharge, as well as memorize the verse and meditate on how to best apply it to my life. In my Bible is a bookmark with this quote: ”It is never too late to become your best self” –   George Eliot. (Maybe pick up a copy of the men’s or women’s Simple Skills book to help become your “very best self.”)

Intentional – As we chose to be PROACTIVE, we  stopped waiting for life to happen and became more active in creating the future we dreamed of.

Each Monday morning, Bill and I have a “marriage meeting” and we use our “weekly worksheet” to set goals, an action plan and pray. This “meeting of the minds” has kept us closer and unified in a season where circumstances could have pulled us apart.

Likable – We made a priority of being RELATIONAL. We deliberately practiced relationship skills we share with others to form healthy friendships, work relationships, dating/ marriage partnerships and a strong family.

Because of our priority of trying to live out the golden rule of “Treat others the same way you would like to be treated”. (Luke 6:31 NASB)  Many people have extended their prayers, support and practical help. In addition, mixed in the mountain of responsibility has been a little fun. For example, to celebrate the release of our “anniversary” expanded and updated edition of Men Are Like Waffles, Women Are Like Spaghetti this year we are doing our own version of a foodie show as we visit Waffles places and Spaghetti restaurants in each city we visit—often eating with friends and having iron sharpens irons conversations over the meal. (If you have a great breakfast cafe or a wonderful pasta place in your city, email us and if we are in your area and we decide to go, we might just invite you along! Email: info@love-wise.com )

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Lively – Maintaining HEALTHY habits of exercise and disciplined eating has given us the energy, drive, and power to live out dreams.

Bill and I workout together most days. We also look for fun active dates like a beach walk, biking, hiking, kayaking, or paddle boarding. There are MANY benefits to physical exercise: releases happy endorphins to lift the mood, keeps you heart healthy, and it even raises the libido (important for the authors of Red Hot Monogamy).

Effective – We have always enjoyed being PRODUCTIVE because it provides the tools to move dreams into reality and deliver tangible fruit for hard work.

I have enjoyed being an editor, then writer, for a new Bible study to be released with Harvest House in 2017. “Discovering Hope in the Psalms” is co-authored by our long-time friend, Jean E Jones and a favorite artist, Karla Dornacher. A powerful verse that has given us hope is Psalms 73: 26, “My flesh and my heart may fail but God is the strength of my life and my portion forever.” If you look up the definitions of key words, one could read this as: My body and inner person may perish, Elohim (the God above all gods) will be my sure STONE MOUNTAIN, my SOLID ROCK,  of my inner person and my territory (my reward and my victorious booty) through all eternity. 

Bill has enjoyed writing a series of Relationship Bible Blogs for believe.com. A favorite one that not just encouraged the audience, but Bill too is: How To Recognize God’s Blessings In Your Family History.

Decisive – When we chose to be DECISIVE, life seemed easier, emotions calmer, and efforts more efficient in living out our goals

We have used every single one of the many “decision-making” tools and tips in Simple Skills, including the Rubber-Band method (to decide to stay or go) and the Eisenhower Grid (to decide priorities and when to schedule them) .

One solid decision we have made is to keep making time for our “far flung” family. Yes, we are there for mom and dad, but our hearts are lifted as we travel to spend time with our three leader sons, their godly wives, and our 4 fun grandkids. Each time we are with them, we are reminded of God’s faithfulness to us as a family—and focusing on God’s faithfulness helps us all live UNSHAKEN.

Join us on the journey as we all become more SKILLED. Praying God will help you and your family live unshaken too!

I keep my eyes always on the Lord. With him at my right hand, I will not be shaken. (Psalms 16:8)

Pam and Bill

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04 2017

Pam and Bill, you have become known for creating SIMPLE SKILLS that lead to healthier living and more successful relationships. Why the SIMPLE focus?

One of life’s great mysteries is that complex issues can be addressed with Simple Skills. When the Israelites asked, “How can we live in a way that is pleasing to God?” Moses was given the 10 Commandments. Jesus stunned people with His authoritative simplicity in such challenges as the Simple Skills golden ruleGolden Rule, “Treat others the same way you want them to treat you.” (Luke 6:31) Throughout the Bible we see God’s desire for our lives summed up in simple directions:

  • One thing I ask from the Lord . . . (Ps 27:4)
  • Jesus looked at him and loved him. “One thing you lack . . . (Mark 10:21)
  • I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do . . .  (Phil 3:13)

We want to spend 7 days in October with you making life simpler for all of us. From October 12 – October 18 we will send you ONE SIMPLE TIP and ONE SIMPLE TOOL each day, if you sign up for the Simple Skill Celebration.

SIMPLY go to the SIMPLE SKILLS book page, (http://love-wise.com/simpleskills.php) watch the video, scroll to the bottom and sign up for the 7 Days of Simple Success Celebration.

SIMPLY STICKY

There is power in having a SINGULAR FOCUS brought about by simple questions:

“What one change would improve your outlook?”
“What one habit would you like to develop?”
“What one skill would help you live more effectively this year?”

Last week we challenged our social media connections (ezine/ facebook/ twitter) to answer the following question:  What one thing do you believe God would like you to DO before the end of the year?

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We are all putting our answer on a sticky note and placing it where we can see it every day (a mirror, desk, refrigerator or dash board). It’s simple. It’s sticky. It keeps us focused on success!

We are committed to pray for every one of you who posts your sticky note on our Facebook page because we know it will encourage all of us if we share the journey together.

SIMPLE STEPS

Over the years, we have discovered that our most valuable accomplishments came about because of Simple Skills applied diligently.

Capture the power of SIMPLE today.

Join the 7 Days of Simple Success Celebration today.

Get your copy of 7 Simple Skills for Every Man and 7 Simple Skills for Every Woman today.

Post your sticky note on our FACEBOOK page so we can pray for you.

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10 2015