Saturday, June 16, 2018

A Good Read and Tea

Toes in the sand, an umbrella hat on my head, iced sweet tea beside me, and a good book in my hand makes for a perfect summer day’s vacation. 

However, before making it to the beach, I started reading A Vast and Gracious Tide by Lisa Carter with a morning cup of hot tea. The book was so good, I couldn’t save it for the 

My goal was to read a page or two to wet my appetite for my beach read. Those first pages were truly appetizers to a good story, interesting characters and multiple challenges to be solved. Reading every chance I could find, I read on until I was fully satisfied at the end of the story.

My hot tea grew cold that first morning as Lisa Carter introduces me to the Outer Banks of North Carolina and two challenged characters of brokenness, stubbornness, and providence. As tasty as my steamy French Vanilla tea with a splash of Almond milk was, I couldn’t reach for cup while reading the scene on the beach where Caden Wallis happens upon McKenna Dockery doing a ballerina lift on the water’s edge and lands as graceful as a butterfly. Before being caught watching her, Caden turns to quick and falls flat on his face. His prostheses tripped him. The tea grew cold but the story didn’t. 

Grace and trust were the battles between the two main characters while the coastal community was pummeled with fires, drugs, and murders. Choices turn the tides on this romantic suspense to a real good read before digging my toes in the sand and sipping tea. 

However, A Vast and Gracious Tide is a worthy re-read for as Psalm 34:18 says,
 "The LORD is close to the Brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit." 

Read on!

May your summer be filled with a good read, lots of flavorful tea, and favor of Jesus Christ.  

    Uplifting blessings, 


Monday, May 14, 2018

Serenity in the Shelter of the Savior

Spring is here with buds, blossoms, and storms. 

Warnings are splashed across the TV screen. 
Thunder rattles the windows. 
Fear tries to fill my heart. 

Whispers of scriptures begin to patter down 
like soft rain to remind me 
where to take shelter. 

As the lighting flashes, the thunder roars, 
and the TV goes black; 
calm replaced my fear. 

 There is serenity in the shelter of the Savior’s scriptures.
My heart is fortified as I ponder 
His faithfulness to shield. 

Storms may brew so strong that windows rattle, 
yet fear will flee 
because scripture pours out 
serenity in me. 

At times questions are like buds that causes us to blossom
when we seek answers in our life storms. Let us ponder budding questions and the fertile scriptures which produce fragrant answers.

Where do I run to when storms darken my life? 

What scripture is my life-line of serenity

When did serenity overcome fear as I rested in the shelter of Jesus Christ, my Savior

Your comments are always treasured.    

Uplifting blessings,

Friday, April 6, 2018

Multi-Millions Were Mine to Keep!

God's answer to my prayers was a basket full of sweetness and worth millions. 

Schwinn Bicycle company was my account in Boulder, Colorado when I was with Professional Travel Corp as a corporate account manager. I inherited this neglected account when I began with the company. Like most new employees, I started off on a three month probation trial. Millions of dollars would be lost if I didn’t find a way to restore this business relationship. 

Prayer always works. However, God’s answers to prayers are not always what we expect or imagine. 

When I asked God for guidance in how I could repair this broken relationship, I heard within my heart, “You are a mother.” Repeating my prayer request didn’t change God’s reminder. He reminded me that I was a mother. I pondered this response all day while working with other accounts and duties. 

Before falling asleep that night, I went back to the Lord with the details of my challenges with this account. “Lord, the decision makers won’t take my phone calls. They don’t even know me. How can I show them that despite being new with the company I am committed to giving them the service they deserve even when they won’t meet me?” Peace and sleep overtook me.

Upon waking, I understood God’s plan on how to begin building this damaged relationship as a mother. It became an exciting challenge once I gained the insight in how to reconnect my companies’ service to a neglected client. 

Schwinn’s central USA headquarters in Boulder was filled with young adults doing the major global travel for their company. My research showed, our company didn’t acknowledge or respond to negative experiences or requests. In short, our youthful clients weren’t being listened too. 

Therefore, my experience as a mother, I used tea times to find out what was going on in our daughter’s world. So I took this transferable skill into the work place! 

Contacting the HR department at Schwinn Bicycle, I arranged a date for me to host a cookie and chat event. Two key items I included to entice the employees to participate proved effective. First, I promised four travel agents would be there to listen to their needs and desires for higher quality service. Second, there would be a drawing for two free round trip tickets to Hawaii. 

Like any tea-time event, preparations had to be made before the date. Going to Otis Spunkmeyer cookie distribution center, I picked up 40 pounds of cookie dough and two portable baking ovens the day before the big event. I baked 30 pounds of cookies. Next, I placed three cookies in clear baggies and closing with curling ribbon.  Two giant baskets were filled with bags of chocolate chip and macadamia nut cookies. 

I slid in on time with cookies, milk and prayers. 
The next morning, I headed from Denver to Boulder, Colorado with baskets of cookies, 10 jugs of milk, two ovens, and 10 pounds of raw cookie dough in a snow storm! I slid in on schedule. 

While the ovens were heating up, I spread a tablecloth on two connecting tables. Making sure the cookie baskets were easily accessible, I poured a couple-a-dozen glasses of milk. Like most moms there were napkins place at both ends of the table. In the center of it all was a bouquet of colorful flowers along with my business cards.

Curiosity brought a few people in while the first batch of cookies were baking. They were invited to take a bag or two of cookies back to their desks. As hoped for, some lingered to chat. More people started coming in when the fragrance of fresh baked cookies started dancing throughout the building. Repeaters showed up for more cookies and long chats with me or with the travel agents I had invited to answer questions the travelers’ questions. 

Before the last batch of cookies were baked and the big drawing for the Hawaiian trip took place, the president of this branch came into the break room. His first words to me were, “Carolyn, you win.” His next words were the answer to my prayers, “We’ll talk to you about keeping our travel business with your company. Set the date with my assistant.  People have been pouring in and out of my office telling me about you and how you want to reconnect with us. We’ll give you a try. The cookies were a nice touch.” 

God was so right, I just had to be a caring mother who worked outside our home to get a conversation started with forgotten. Multi-millions were mine in keeping this neglected account, all it took was a mother’s touch. 

I just had to remember Romans 12:13, “Practice hospitality.” 

May you experience an unimaginable answer to a prayer that only God can give. 
The experience is worth multi-millions. 

Uplifting blessings,

The TeaCup Lady

Bike riders and snow storm pictures by Pixabay