Once Upon a Time

Once upon a time there was a little girl who felt very misunderstood and actually unsure of who loved her. She longed for a pet, a very specific pet. Alas, pets came & went but none were this pet. Of course she loved each of them and something in her died when she lost each one. Someone else chose each because of whatever reason they had and she accepted each. It seems it was not meant for her to have a four legged friend very long for something always happened to them.

Somewhere in the distance there was this hissing whisper, “you are not worthy of your dreams, you’re not worthy”. She did not know her accuser but what she heard felt true, had she ever had the special pet she wanted, had they lived or remained with her very long? So, deep inside she believed…believed she was second best and what she deserved was too.

A perception was born, a foundation laid. This become woven in the fabric of who she was, unnoticed because of her acceptance. She stopped dreaming, in all areas giving preference to others, enabling their dreams to the extent of her ability.

One day she found her pet…the specific one she had always wanted! Happiness wrapped its arms around her. Oh, how lucky she was! She couldn’t believe it!

They lived together one year and then he died.

Hiss, you’re not worthy, hiss, came the whisper again. She listened. Again, it came. It was familiar, it seemed to ring true.  Ah, but this time she knew who her accuser was and the nature of the lies he spoke. Each hiss brought forth the lies woven in her being. But now instead of validating the recurring lie, it was met with truth! Truth! She was loved by her heavenly Father, chosen by Him!

You did not choose Me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit, and that your fruit should remain, that whatever you ask the Father in My name He may give you.  John 15:16

Chosen!! Not discarded. Not forgotten. Loved and selected by the King! The Giver of good gifts!

And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose. Romans 8:28

No more lies. They make come but they will not be believed. She knows she is loved and her heart is full of praise and delight in His presence!

Goodbye Snoopy,  my friend.  January 29, 2013

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Ayden Christopher

This sweet baby is my grandson. Why, am I introducing you to him? Well, that’s because I am so thankful for him.  When my daughter was 8 months pregnant with him we discovered he had a heart defect. Special arrangements had to be made because not every hospital can deal with heart defects. Ayden was born August 14, 2010 with Hypo-plastic Left Heart Syndrome. This picture is his birthday. He had to be whisked off immediately after birth. This is the prep he had to go thru.

Ayden lived 12 days due to complications. There are surgeries to correct this and many children live.  He didn’t make it to the first one. Our time with him was precious-howbeit painful. We celebrated his 1 week birthday, we have a pic of  him wearing a college ring (his uncle’s). We savored every small thing!

God is Sovereign and sometimes it hurts. When you lose a baby the grief is different but still enormous. It’s every thing Ayden didn’t get to do, we didn’t get to do with him, all our hopes and dreams we grieved. I’m crying as I’m writing BUT I still smile when I look at sweet face. I cannot wait to see him again! I’m thankful I will, I’m thankful for him! Though his life was short he is loved tremendously!

 

Help. Anyone? Please………….

Have you ever needed help? Who do you look to for it?

I have been moved by the interviews with victims of Super Storm Sandy. Their cries were loud. They were demanding. They expected response. And response they are getting. Churches & Crisis Response Teams are there & others are forming. People want to help. During times of distress we come together, we share resources. We care and we wonder what if.

A couple things come to mind here. First, if Jesus is your Savior, we are told to come boldly into the throne room for grace & mercy in our time of need. This is promised to us because of our inheritance in Jesus. We are God’s kids. He desires to care for us, and loves doing so!

Secondly, everyday there are victims of genocide.  Did you know that? Do think about what they must face each day of their lives? I cannot help but think what impact we would have if we rallied on their behalf as we do in other crisis. We’ll not see one of them demanding someone do something. They accept their lot in life, just doing the next thing next. The media has yet to give coverage day after day, hour after hour, to these atrocities. They have no voice but ours.

In no way do I want to diminish the loss and utter destruction from Sandy. What I want us to consider is the difference manpower can make in the lives of those that need us. One such group is the Nubian, who live in rocks to hide from missiles. No way to provide for themselves….only hide. You can learn more about them at http://www.savethenuba.com.

 

Ashes…..now what?

Storms can leave behind rubble. The TV, internet, and twitter has been full of updates and pictures. Those whose reality this is likely cannot view the exposure they’ve been given. They need help and it is in the helping, standing alongside, hugs, kindnesses that healing begins.  How beauty births out of ashes. As followers of Christ, it is a healing – restoration ministry we have been given. This often is when the world accepts the church, rather than trying to limit, control, and even persecute her.

Emotional storms leave rubble behind also. The chances of having that rubble exposed to the world  is a little more narrow; there are exceptions of course, but the vast majority of us escape it. Does it change our loss? Not at all. More than likely we feel isolated though, there aren’t throngs of others experiencing what we are…well, at least not that we are aware of. This is one of the reasons Father said not to forsake the assembling of ourselves together. (Hebrews 10:25) It is there we find the helping, standing along aside, hugs, kindnesses that nurture healing. Jesus wants to bring beauty from our ashes….but we have to let Him. He eagerly awaits our invitation, to carry us, to bring peace to us, to comfort us. It is He who is the Healer….no matter where our storms come from. You have all His attention-turn to Him.

What About ME?

This is a post from the peaceful wife. Her heart is godly marriages and she has earned the right to speak from her own experience. I recommend reading her blog. Today, push thru the pain of what she is saying to hearing the opportunity of increased intimacy with our God! Hear what He has to say. Oh, He loves you so!

The Peaceful Wife

So, a LOT of wives are working daily on trying to respect their husbands and not control them anymore, trying to follow Christ and do the whole marriage thing His way. That is AWESOME!

But MANY wives are getting stuck at the beginning of the journey – wondering, “What about ME?”  “What about what I want?”  “When do I get MY way?”  “Why do I have to be the only one forgiving, changing, respecting and cooperating?”  “What about HIM?”  “Why doesn’t HE have to change?” “What about MY needs?”

THE FIRST PHASE IS HARD!  IMPOSSIBLE, REALLY ON OUR OWN.

This is a LONG process of growth and learning.  It is not an instant flip on the light switch and you are suddenly a godly wife.  It’s a painful process.  The beginning is especially painful because that is when you begin to die to self.

Dying is PAINFUL.  Killing self…

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Absence Makes the Heart Grow Fonder

Does it? Does absence really make the heart grow fonder? I started thinking about it because there are quite a few blogs I follow. Really good, insightful thoughts out there and I like to ‘like’ the post when I read it and do. That was how I started this blog in the first place – I wanted to ‘like’ something I read. You cannot do that unless you are a blogger….

Back to the issue at hand; for days now I cannot like anything! Zip, Nada. Thus, this post is an experiment; I want to see if I can ‘like’ something after breathing life back into this thing! 😉  Now, apparently absence does not make WordPress any fonder of me – rather, it choses to ignore me (pending experiment, of course).

How do you react? Does your heart grow fonder thinking about the one whose missing? My hubby and I had a long distance courtship. I couldn’t stop thinking about him 🙂 We didn’t settle for absence; we were on the phone for hours and driving most every weekend to be together. Maybe that’s how it works — we worked at our relationship because we had to in order for there to be one (thus growing fonder because of our investment?). It was alot easier to fall in a rut and take each other for granted, I suppose, after we got married. I remember complaining that before we were married my hubby could finish my sentences, always knew what I was thinking, and could call me at the exact time I needed him. Why was that a complaint?? Because after we married he lost the ability to speak my language (and I, his I’m sure); he didn’t seem to know me at all! All these misunderstandings and unmet expectations. UGH! We had stopped thinking about the other and started focusing on ourselves.

Now, there’s a stink that will rile any stingbug!!  Instead, let’s do an experiment – wake up that blog! put your mate first!  grow those hearts fonder!!

Wounds?? what wounds?

“Many will charge that dragging up the past is fruitless and wastes time on things that are best forgotten…but emotional wounds are like physical ones: They do not heal if they are neglected; they only become infected and can become life damaging. The hurt must be brought into the light and treated.” ~Albert Haase

Ever wondered why you do the things you do, react the way you react, interpret the way you interpret? Our learned behaviors seem normal, we feel normal. Small hurts, we might go on and on about, looking for validation from others. BIG hurts, we hide them, afraid something is wrong with us or this wouldn’t have happened. What comes next? Insecurity, doubt, guilt, perhaps paranoia? I suspect these are among the bacteria of emotional wounds.  We can’t cover them – deeper, deeper we try to; but like it or not we become enslaved to the very thing we’re trying to get away from.

Whats lurking under your skin? Bring it to Jehovah Rapha, the God Who Heals – our Great Physician and get exposed to the Light. Infection gone. Healing begun.

missing what I lost….

how about you? Is something you once had now gone?

I have suffered with pain and stages of immobility for a year now.  My latest surgery was successful, for that I am grateful and thank the Lord! Yea!!

Ever heard ‘use it or lose it’? Want to guess what I did the most during this past year? Yup, sit. (Before I quit shopping, I was using those motorized carts.) Pain would not allow me to do the things I always took for granted.  So, I sat.

While I am healing rapidly from the surgery and can walk without assistance I lacked muscle strength, endurance & balance. I’d prefer to have these things just reappear with the healing of the surgical site. Yes…YES, I’m lazy. I’m tired. Where did my energy go and what did it do with the legs I used to have?? Argh…

I’ve gone back to work. I am soo tired after work. I stopped doing my exercises….what reward did I get? Stiffness. Immobility.

I am gonna have to work to gain these things back. First one pain, now another – uck!  My body responded quickly to therapy, but just as soon I as stopped it was gone, poof! Immediately, zap.  Pain embraces me when I try to do what I’m supposed to. I’m not crazy about embracing it!

I am reminded how this also happens in the spiritual realm. If I don’t spend time with Jesus, if I don’t read the Bible, if I don’t spend time worshipping, I dry up. We were made to worship and we can’t do this without getting to know Him. It requires effort on our part – just like my exercises.

So, my question is: did you find what you are missing or are you immobile too?

Shackles, Anyone?

One day at a time has turned into one step at a time for me. I didn’t think I’d make it to surgery again but here I am! It’s tomorrow. I’m actually looking forward to it. But I was last time too and it didn’t work for me. I am so tired of pain and moving against it. Here’s the thing, there is always someone who is dealing with more. Don’t you wonder how they do it?
It’s disappointing to think something is gonna do the trick and it doesn’t . Discouragement can take over. This is one heavy bed fellow. He will weigh you down until you think you can’t get up. Shackles couldn’t hold you any better. What do you do? Here’s what I like…..
Psalm 22:3 tells us that God inhabits the praise of His people. Have you ever started repeating or singing praises to God when you don’t feel like it? Something happens I can’t explain. A transformation. Get those shackles off your feet!

Grief

How many levels of grief are there? How many different things can one grieve? There are many losses. Pretty much anything you have and then you don’t – you can grieve. The strangest thing I think I grieved was an abusive marriage. That sounds crazy but it was more of a grieving of what I didn’t have with him. I found that to be true when my beautiful 12 day old grandson died. Our memories are so brief and contained to the hospital, it was what we didn’t get to do with him that crushed our hearts. Sometimes grief comes when you expect it and other times it comes by surprise, either way Shock usually answers the door with his twin, Disbelief. These 2 dance with Reality, giving one time to acclimate to the situation.

We buried a brother this weekend. Within hours of finding out he was terminal, he was gone. We all expected more time. Scripture tells us we have no promise of time. I’m afraid I don’t really live that way….I don’t think I know anyone who does. We would be more concerned about everyone we meet if we did. In a blink of an eye we can cross from one realm to the next and the decisions of this life is final. I’m not suggesting that God’s children hand out more tracs. I think that is something we do more to make us feel better than to really change someone’s life. Somehow, it’s impersonal, and we have a very personal God! A passionate God! That’s my favorite word to describe Jesus! I know Gene is with Jesus; that’s not to say it doesn’t hurt…but it’s us that hurts not Gene. Our pain is only for a little while and then we will be together eternally.

I guess I just want to challenge you today. Get to know Passionate Jesus and let that Passionate Love in you saturate others. It will probably take longer than handing out a trac but the return will probably be different!