Jupiter Ascending…a lesson learned.

Last weekend, a friend and I had plans to go to the movies.  We each had at least one of our kids with us so we had to see something no more than PG-13.  Much to my dismay, the only movie at the theater during the time we could go, was Jupiter Ascending.  You can’t possibly know how much my eyes rolled up into my head.  I HATE sci-fi, futuristic garbly goop but I ended up learning something amidst the special effects.

Jupiter Ascending

Photo Credit: Wikipedia

I wish I could tell you that I walked into the movie theater and simply enjoyed my time with my daughter and my friend.  No dice.  I grumbled, mumbled, and complained all the way through the previews.  When Jupiter Ascending finally started, I pulled my coat up to my neck and got settled in for a nice nap.

In the beginning scenes of the movie, I was acquainted with the main character, Jupiter Jones.  Not only did Jupiter have the same last name I was born with, but she woke up everyday dreading the day ahead just like I do ….more often than I would care to admit.

Jupiter was a Russian illegal immigrant who spent her days cleaning rich people’s homes.  To tell this story, the filmmakers replicated Jupiter’s everyday life by showing her cutting her alarm clock off at 4:45am, dragging herself to make coffee for her mother, constantly cleaning toilets and then starting the process over again with that darn alarm clock.

Right after hitting the alarm clock to silence it, Jupiter would mumble, “I hate my life”.

Parts of me wanted to awake from my pseudo slumber and yell out..”I feel you Jupiter” but my child would have been so embarrassed and that would not be the whole truth.

I don’t hate my life but I often feel like Jupiter…. trapped by the drudgery of everyday life.

With a plot that was too confusing to even try to explain, (I told y’all I don’t like that sci-fi stuff), Jupiter was being hunted by aliens because she carried a genetic legacy that entitled her own the planet Earth.  Luckily, she was befriended by a half human/canine alien warrior named Caine…played by none other than Channing Tatum (I’m awake now)!

Jupiter traveled into space and learned about her new entitlements, but more importantly, she learned about herself.  In the middle of all of that, there was an “almost wedding” with a totally fabulous dress:

Jupiter Jones-Wedding

image credit:usmagazine

When forced to choose, Jupiter sacrificed herself and her family for greater good of Earth.  Yet, even after choosing the “right thing”, she still had to fight the villan Balem. Eventually, she was heroically rescued by her hunky alien warrior, Caine. (Well, of course she was!)

Jupiter returned to her old life of cleaning even though she owned Earth. Although she was no longer “trapped” by the drudgery of every day life, she returned to it with a new perspective…appreciation.

The movie Jupiter Ascending was far-fetched, confusing, and most reviewers only gave it 2 stars at best.  However, there was a lesson learned from one Jones girl to another. Jupiter Jones reminded Katina Jones Rice to practice gratitude.

Time to dust off my old Gratitude Journal.

How do you practice gratitude?

Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. (1 Thessalonians 5:18)

Dreams Deferred-Pour Your Heart Out

For the last couple of weeks, I have been using breakfast as a time of quick devotion and “girl-talk time” for me and my daughters.  This morning, I read them the poem A Dream Deferred by Langston Hughes.

What happens to a dream deferred?
Does it dry up
like a raisin in the sun?
Or fester like a sore–
And then run?
Does it stink like rotten meat?
Or crust and sugar over–
like a syrupy sweet?
Maybe it just sags
like a heavy load.
Or does it explode?

I asked my third grader if she knew what deferred meant.  She paused for a second and then said, “expired”? (In reference to the line about rotted meat.) “Perhaps”.  I responded.  Then I asked them what was necessary for a raisin to dry up in the sun, for meat to rot or for something to crust over.  “TIME!”  they both chimed!

Yes, time is key ingredient to a dream deferred.  When our dreams are deferred, they don’t happen on our time line.  Dreams, hopes, aspirations not occurring when we expect them to are bitter pills to swallow.  Especially since most things in our modern day lives (emails, texts, faxes, online purchases, digital images), happen instantly.

Proverbs 13:12 states:  Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a longing fulfilled is a tree of life.

One of the things I have been “queen” at in the past is taking things into my own hands to try to MAKE them happen.  Things in my own hands usually leads to regret because my focus is on the dream instead of the dream giver.

So what DOES happen to a dream deferred?  Does it sag like a heavy load or does it explode? 

Some dreams will explode and just like Proverbs 13:12 states, we will feel fulfilled.  Others may never come to fruition and we may be heartbroken about them. The point is to not focus on the dream and all of its details but to focus on the ONE who gives us the power to dream.

Focusing on HIM means thanking HIM for our many blessings and then trusting HIM to navigate us towards our best.

Where do you need to shift your focus and begin an attitude of gratitude and trust?

This post is part of a weekly meme hosted by Shell at Things I Can’t Say.


31 Days to Clean Days 23-24

Happy Monday Divas!  We are chugging along on the 31 Days to Clean Challenge! Our 31 Days to clean challenge is based on the ebook ”31 Days to Clean” by Sarah Mae.  Go here for more info on our challenge.

When I started this challenge, I had NO idea how much I would learn.  31 Days to Clean is about the “why”, the vision and the heart for taking care of our homes.  Well into the challenge, I discovered my vision and heart for taking care of my home is that I want our home to be a place of encouragement… a place where my girls can “bounce back”.

Once I identified my purpose, getting and keeping things in order has been a little easier.  By doing this challenge, I have been motivated to complete cleaning tasks that have been sitting in a pile of “I-really-need-to-blah-blah-blah”. 

I cleaned out and organized my closet and my daughters closets! We gave away and donated over 5 huge trash bags of clothes.  Over the past two weekends, we cleaned out our basement AND garage.  It was hard work but the best part was doing it together.

Days 23 and 24 of the challenge were all about dealing with distractions and organization.  I get distracted easily, especially when cleaning! Facebook, blogging, and talking on the telephone are my biggest culprits.  I have had to put my phone away to get our major projects done. I didn’t touch my phone or a computer for most of the day on Saturday and it felt great!

In addition to being easily distracted, I am a true Organizing Junkie! We have every color and size plastic bin ever made.  Once we really hunkered down and threw things away, our basement looked like a container store.  I have learned, “organized-everything-in-a-pretty-container” has to come after purging!

After each day’s reading in our challenge, Sara Mae gives two challenges:

  • The Mary Challenge -Something you do that encourages/engages your heart
  • The Martha Challenge – Specific cleaning tasks

The Mary Challenge for days 23 &24 -Figure out what distracts you and then think of what you can do to lesson your distractions.  Pick one hot spot in your house and bring about order.

The Martha Challenge for days 23& 24- Home Office-steam clean carpet, area rugs and wood floors. Clean out your desk, update files, organize supplies and drawers.

Most of all, be grateful for your space and your life!

Colossians 3:17 And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.