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Posted on 11.21.2014 by Jody Noland

It’s a day that I will always remember. 

A live interview with Gretchen Carlson on FoxNews. 

Yes, it was an honor and a privilege to share the message of Leave Nothing Unsaid with a nationwide audience.

If you’re wondering, Gretchen is incredibly gracious, genuine and well-prepared. Just what you’d expect from your average, run-of-the-mill Stanford graduate who is also a concert violinist, former Miss America and national news anchor. 

Posted on 11.14.2014 by Jody Noland

Never underestimate the impact that your words can make.

Words can serve like fertilizer, encouraging a person to grow and blossom.

Words can also act like emotional “Round-Up,” causing a person to wither, shut-down, and never fulfill their potential.

What kind of words are you speaking into the lives of the people you love?

And what kind of words are you speaking to yourself? (Sometimes, our most condemning words are those we whisper to ourselves.)

Posted on 11.07.2014 by Jody Noland

November is National Hospice Palliative Care Month. In honor of the incredible people who serve others in this beautiful way, I am reposting a message from earlier in 2014.

It’s time for hospice care.” Those words initially hit like a sledgehammer on the hopes of a patient and their loved ones. Translation: “prepare for death.”  Yet what initially seems like the worst possible prognosis also offers the possibility of an incredibly meaningful time because it gives people the chance to say goodbye.

Posted on 10.31.2014 by Jody Noland

When was the last time you opened your mailbox and actually found a personal note, addressed to you? How did you feel? On the rare occasions it happens for me, I immediately rip the envelope open. No self control here. No waiting to get into the house.

And what if it was a note for no apparent reason? Not a thank-you for a gift, a birthday card, or an invitation? Just a note to say “I’m grateful for you,” “Thanks for the difference you make in my life,” “You have inspired me.” “This is a character quality about you that I really love.” That’s a pretty rare occurrence, isn’t it?

Posted on 10.24.2014 by Jody Noland

 

Do you ever feel invisible? Me too. Most of us probably battle this feeling at some point in our lives.

Everyone has different triggers. Mine generally involve being in large groups of people  (makes sense that I’m part of a “mega-church,” right? ) or in new settings with no familiar faces. Or in a group of people that I know where everyone else is engaged in conversation, and I’m awkwardly looking around.

How about you? What triggers that “invisible” feeling for you? And what do you do with the feelings? 

Posted on 10.17.2014 by Jody Noland

Do you ever have those moments when you can CLEARLY see someone else’s faults? Secretly give yourself an imaginary pat on the back because of your astute sense of discernment? I had that experience recently when a ministry colleague reflexively told me “we’re not going to do that” when I suggested an idea I thought had great merit.  

My prickly retort was “why don’t we at least pray about it before so quickly saying no?”  (Two points for my reasonable, spiritually mature response, right?)

Posted on 10.10.2014 by Jody Noland

Oh, the roller coaster of aging parents. One moment, you can’t imagine life without them. The next, you’re ready to tear your hair out. Then, you hit the curve of overwhelming guilt from having had those negative feelings. And on and on it goes. 

One day, the frustrations will be over. Your parents will be gone and you’ll long to hear that same story for the 373rd time. You’ll wish you had cherished the time more, gotten frustrated less and listened a little better. I certainly do. 

Posted on 10.03.2014 by Jody Noland

Never do those feelings torment a person more than when a loved one has died. Words left unspoken. Gratitude unexpressed. Forgiveness withheld. Hurt that festers. The pile of regrets often growing deeper and more painful with each passing year.

What do you do with all of those emotions when a loved one is gone? Many of us try stuffing them away, but the emotions eventually erupt. Sometimes our pain spews onto someone else in the form of anger. Or we might inflate like a life raft as a result of using food for comfort or slowly disintegrate from a bottomless glass of wine.

Posted on 9.26.2014 by Jody Noland

The glazed stare. The “deer caught in the headlights” look.  I’ve seen it a lot. And, sadly, it’s come most frequently in response to the question: “What’s your dream?”

Dream? Me? Have a dream? For my life?” Yes, YOU! 

Yes, you devoted homemaker who now has an empty nest.

Yes, you retired entrepreneur who misses the excitement and challenges of building a business.

Yes, you hamster-on-the-wheel.

Yes, you who feels lonely and forgotten.

Yes, you busy mom of young children.

Posted on 9.19.2014 by Jody Noland

The previous two years had been brutal. I’d survived the dying and death of my husband and both parents. Watched each one draw their last breath.  Coped with my only child leaving for college. Processed mountains of paperwork, and had my fill of cleaning out others’ “stuff.” Whew! That I was still functioning was a tribute to the grace of God, therapy, and wonderful friends.

What else could happen? (Don’t ever ask that question. Advice from Job and Joby. I mean Jody.)

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