Eve Annunziato

Tired Of Being Tired? August 30, 2008

My husband recently got me very excited (no it’s not that, get your mind out of the gutter people!  That’s another blog topic altogether!).  It was after reading his recent post about being tired.   I think many of us are tired of being tired, tired of being status quo, and tired of mediocrity.

Today, I received a phone call from my best friend here in Nashville.  She said she was in the process of reading a motivational book when she started to think of me (it was at that point that I was flattered that I was in her thoughts!).  Susie explained that she understood that in the past I’ve been told I have a restless spirit and she said that although that description has hurt my feelings at times, she wanted to let me know she thinks it’s one of my positive attributes.  She proceeded to explain that my somewhat restlessness has me always taking risks, setting and achieving my goals all the while saying, “Okay, I’ve finished that! Now God, what’s next on my agenda to accomplish?”

I’m not sure if I can live up to her standard, but I accepted the kind words nonetheless!   Like almost all of you, I do indeed make a concerted effort to strive to achieve excellence – not always getting there but trying all the same.  Charlie’s below post, made me stand up and cheer!!

I think many people are tired…

Tired of the status quo…

Tired of average…

Tired of unremarkable…

Tired of the same old, same old…

Tired of feeling like there’s more…

Are you?

What if you took being tired of these things and used it to motivate you to change? What if you decided it’s time to…

break out,

step up,

take a chance,

be different,

dream higher,

reach higher,

be nicer, serve better,

follow your dreams,

and be remarkable?

Is an extrodinary life calling your name?  If so, isn’t it time to answer the call?

 

Is Your Relationship A Weakening Mesocylone? August 18, 2008

Filed under: relationships — Eve Annunziato @ 12:39 am
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When I woke up this week and surprisingly found a dozen roses and a note that says, “I’m proud of you and I believe in you,” I thought, “I really like this guy!”  And, it got me thinking about relationships and the different seasons we all experience on a periodic (sometimes daily!) basis.  One of Charlie’s past posts relates weather cycles to our own life cycles in order to help maintain balance in our everyday lives.  I can relate to relationship waves – I am very well aware that in a marriage they go up and down.  I’m quite in tune that we’re all commonly working toward keeping the communication open and the intimacy healthy.  As a result, I’ve made a concerted effort, this year in particular, to spend quality time with my loving spouse in order to make him a top priority.  I’ve also failed in this area at times – big time.  Therefore, I know first hand, that if I begin to lose focus on him and the importance of our relationship I can easily head us directly into the path of a destructive storm.  So, I hope you enjoy this reminder from Charlie as much as I did:

What the heck is a mesocycle, you ask, and what does it have to do with relationships?  Great question!

A mesocyclone is a rotating storm.  Mesocyclones can strengthen into full-bore supercells which in turn can produce tornadoes.  They can be very destructive and are not taken lightly by meteorologists when they show up on a radar screen.   But today, I don’t want to focus the potential danger of mesocyclones; I want to focus on their life cycle for a moment.

Once a mesocyclone has formed and is in the mature stage, it can only continue if the circulation stays strong.  These storms are an amazing interdependent system of wind, pressure and moisture.  The strongest ones can even overcome external forces that work to tear them apart.   But during the weakening stage, the rotation begins to slow, spread out and pull apart until eventually it dissipates.

Relationships can be much the same – they often resist the outside negative influences of the world when they are strong but fall apart when spouses begin to pull apart from one another.  Take the following scenario…  You begin to withdraw emotionally and physically from your spouse because he or she seems to be focused on something else more than you (i.e. career, work, money, hobby, themselves or another person, etc).  Your spouse senses your withdrawal and coldness and responds by spending even less time with you.  In turn, you get more and more frustrated and close your emotional door nearly all the way.  Now, your spouse does the same.  Eventually, you seem to only argue with your spouse during the few times you speak to one another at all.  This is a very dangerous cycle.  Eventually the relationship weakens to the point that it slows and separates just like the dying mesocyclone.  What once was a formidable force that could resist the outside negative influences of the world is now just a whisper in the wind.  Sad.  What’s even more sad is that much of this “pulling apart” of the relationship can likely be avoided, but it takes guts and it takes willingness to swallow some pride.  If you find your natural reaction is to pull away when your spouse seems to be doing the same, one of you HAS to stop and turn around or you’ll both keep going in opposite directions.

I’ve found that those with the most successful marriages don’t get caught in this cycle very often.  Talk about your problems.  Don’t be passive aggressive.  Share your feelings.  Don’t get defensive when your mate voices concerns.  Listen.  This obviously won’t solve all marriages but it sure would help many.  It sure has helped mine.

 

Am I God’s Gift To Serving? August 13, 2008

Filed under: Ministry — Eve Annunziato @ 2:16 am
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There was a time when I thought God and the church were lucky to have me. In other words, I was God’s gift to serving! “Boy! Are they fortunate to have Eve Annunziato on their team!” It didn’t take me long to realize I had it all wrong; all sorts of backwards. On the contrary, when I serve, I’m blessed. I’m also filled with joy, hope and love and I’m granted the immense gift of giving that brings me satisfaction and purpose. The bottom line: God doesn’t need me to serve. I need Him. The following devotional by author John Piper really spoke to my heart about this very subject.

“Serving God is utterly different from serving anyone else. God is extremely jealous that we understand this – and enjoy it. For example, he commands us, ‘Serve the Lord with gladness’ in Psalm 100:2. There is a reason for this gladness. It is given in Acts 17:25 God is not served by human hands, as though he needed anything, since he himself gives to all men life and breath and everything. We serve him with gladness because we do not bear the burden of meeting his needs. Rather, we rejoice in a service where he meets our needs.”

The point is plain: Serving God is receiving the blessing, receiving the joy and receiving the benefit. Serving Him is not a giving to God, but an amazing “getting” from God. Am I God’s gift to serving? No, NOT QUITE!   Serving is a gift to me…

 

Kung Fu Panda Part Two August 3, 2008

“You are too concerned with what was and what will be. There’s an old saying; Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery, and today is a gift; that’s why it’s called the Present.”
Oogway (The Tourist from the Movie Kung Fu Panda)

As promised, here are my honest uncensored thoughts on the above ancient and wise philosophies from the latest DreamWorks cartoon:

1.  About Yesterday – let it go already! I’ve made some stupid and pathetic decisions in my past. There are risks I’ve regretted and paths I should have never traveled. But I have news for ya, in the eyes of your merciful, all loving God of the universe, they’re over, they’re forgiven, they’re forgotten and buried on the ocean floor never to resurface. If our heavenly Father can, than why can’t we forgive ourselves? Recently, I’ve started to adapt this philosophy and sure enough, over this past year in particular, I worked hard to break this habit of tossing and turning over “Eve’s pathetic moves!” I’m glad I’m making strides and growing in this area; gaining more joy in my life and a lot more sleep!! Should I learn from my unwise choices? Certainly. Have a teachable spirit, acquire the knowledge, and then move on… After all, it’s history already!

2.   About Tomorrow – who knows? For example, my lovely and beautiful mother has cancer. There I said it. I despise even mentioning the dreaded “c” word. However, it’s a reality. We were once again saddened to find that it has resurfaced and reared its ugly head. Over the past few months, the bad cells have spread and she’s fighting hard as the pain has increased. Her next move is back to the dreaded chemotherapy treatments causing sickness, nausea, and many other negative side effects. Yes, Mom will prevail and I have complete faith will WIN the battle through Him. As I type, the kids and I are on our way to visit my family for our annual crabbing and beach trip in St. Michaels, MD, staying along the picturesque Chesapeake Bay. There we will love on Mom and tell her EVERY DAY that we value her, appreciate her and will fight with her. Yes, her pain breaks all of our hearts for no one wants to see our loving, thoughtful, caring, gracious, positive, uplifting, encouraging, friend go through an ounce of pain (I could spend all day listing her positive attributes to our family and the Kingdom!). This year we’ve traveled with Mom visiting great places like Disney World (at her request) and have seen her more over the last 12 months than in years past. We’ve decided to take her anywhere anytime and never take her for granted. Next, we’re thinking about a return to Europe. She loved Italy when we took her, and lately she’s mentioned Spain. When she is finished treatment, I imagine I’ll be booking that trip next! My point – what does the future look like exactly? I have no idea hence it’s indeed a mystery.

     About The Present – Our days are numbered and everyday is a Gift! So, go on and LIVE IN IT! Enough said.