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The Origin of
My Sun & Shade Ministries

The Founder's Journey

After my husband and I uprooted our lives from Michigan in 2017, we settled into a small apartment in Western New York. Eventually, we moved into a two-story house and began caring for a 50'x100' lot. Although it was a change from our previous life in Michigan, we knew God had led us to our new home.

The Backyard Swing

I still miss my backyard swing in Marine City, which my dad gave to me as a Mother's Day gift. It was under the ash tree near the pole barn, and I loved to sit there and watch the sunrise and sunset. From that spot, I could see the entire yard, the barn, the driveway, the cornfields beyond our yard, and the neighboring houses. The swing became a haven for me to relax, pray, and reflect on my beautiful yard and garden.

A Peaceful Moment

One summer morning, I sat on the swing with a cup of coffee, enjoying the warm sun and the sweet sounds of nature. The black-eyed Susan's swayed in the breeze, and I was alone with my thoughts.

The sunshine in the backyard spaks faith

Finding Comfort in Prayer During Challenging Times


During a particularly challenging time for my family, I turned to prayer and found myself in tears. The situation had been going on for a while, and we were feeling weary from the strain. I couldn't help but wonder why the Lord wasn't making things easier for us. As I cried and prayed, the sun suddenly shone brightly in the sky, but the ash tree's branches over the swing prevented the light from reaching me. Watching the sharp shadows the sunlight cast on the lawn, I found myself moved and began to sing a song the Lord had given me years prior during another trial.

The words of the song are taken from Psalm 121.

I lift up my eyes to the hills,

where does my help come from?

I lift up my eyes to the hills,

where does my help come from?

My help comes from the Lord,

The Maker of Heaven and Earth,

My help comes from the Lord,

He is my God

My help comes from the Lord,

The Maker of Heaven and Earth,

He watches over me, 

both now and forevermore

He is the shade at my right hand,

the sun will not harm me by day,

nor the moon harm me by night

Both now and forevermore

The sun's rays hitting the earth with hopeful light

Reflecting on God's Presence During Difficult Times


While swinging on the yard swing and singing a song, I had a few thoughts that came to mind. Firstly, I realized that the Lord is always my Helper, the source of my support. As the Maker of Heaven and Earth, He is aware of everything that is happening at all times. Therefore, I can trust that He knows what my family is going through, even if I don't feel His presence during tough times. This is because He promises to be with me, to provide shade, and to never leave me.

According to Psalm 121, if we look up to Him, the Maker of Heaven and Earth will protect us from harm day and night. However, during difficult times, it can be hard to see things clearly. Our understanding may be clouded, or our view may be blocked. Perhaps, the Lord wants to keep His works hidden from our view to achieve His purposes in our lives without interference. On the other hand, during good times, I can confidently feel the Lord's presence. The sun's rays beam down on me, warming me, and making me feel good. During such times, I can clearly feel the love and acceptance of my Heavenly Father.

Shade from the sun causes relief from hurts

Reflections on Overcoming Life's Challenges with Faith

Sitting on the yard swing that day, I felt like I was in the shade – both physically and spiritually. My family was going through a tough time, and I couldn't understand why the Lord was taking so long to help us. Looking back, I'm amazed that we made it out of that trial unscathed. But I know that the Maker of Heaven and Earth came to our aid, comforting me with the knowledge that He sees our struggles and means them for our good. As Romans 8:29 KJV says, "All things work together for those who love God and are called according to His purposes."

The turning point came when I learned to embrace both the "good times in the sun" and the "tough times in the shade" and recognize that they were both from the Lord. I found peace and assurance in my quiet moments on the yard swing, knowing that the Lord was with me every step of the way through the long, trying situation. Even though I couldn't see His hand at work or feel His presence at times, I trusted that He had a purpose for everything that was happening.

Things began to improve for my family after I accepted our situation, and I learned to rely on the Lord in both the good and bad times. He promises to always be with us, giving us peace and assurance along the way – even when we can't see Him. By lifting our eyes to the hills and trusting in the Maker of Heaven and Earth, we can find help in both the sun and the shade.

Lift up your eyes to the hills

Where does your help come from?

Does it come from the Lord?

The Maker of heaven and earth?

Only then, can He be your help in the Sun & Shade.

Join the Journey

In 2019, the Holy Spirit prompted me to start a blog for Christian women, and it was during this moment that the idea for "My Sun & Shade Ministries" was born. I wanted to create a platform that celebrated the balance of both sun and shade in our lives. Just like my backyard needed both to thrive, I believe that we too need both in order to live a fulfilling life.

With this in mind, I started sharing my experiences and tips as a pastor's wife, mom, teacher, grammie, and administrative assistant on this website. I wanted to inspire others to find their own balance of sun and shade, not just in their gardens but in their lives as well.

Through "My Sun & Shade," I hope to encourage others to embrace the ups and downs of life, and to find beauty in moments of sun and shade. Whether it's learning to appreciate the warmth of the sun on your face and enjoying life's wonderful moments or finding solace in the coolness of the shade, when discouragement has overwhelmed us, there is always a way to find balance.

So come join me on this journey of discovering how to live a life filled with both sun and shade. Follow "My Sun & Shade Ministries" on Instagram, Pinterest, Facebook or Twitter, and let's grow together.

  • Share photos of your own backyard oasis using the hashtag #MySunAndShade

  • Follow our inspirational tips and insight for creating a balanced and beautiful life

  • Join our community of like-minded individuals who embrace the moments of sun and shade in our life

Join the Journey

 

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