Category Archives: Just Blogging

Pain

I’ve been told I’m a bit philosophical . . . and I guess that’s a true statement. I’ve also decided that I’ve finally lived enough years and seen enough to have some opinions that may be worth listening to. For the last half hour or so I’ve been contemplating pain.

Perhaps you’ve read another post in my blog, and you know I have this autoimmune disease called Polymyalgia Rheumatica (at least that’s what the docs believe it is – I still have a bit more testing to go through). Whatever it is, it causes pain and muscle weakness. My shoulders ache, I have to lift my legs with my hands to get into my car. It seems to effect my throat and my eyes, and it makes me tired.

So, today as I was folding clothes with my shoulders starting to burn, I thought about pain in general. And it occurred to me that everyone has pain. Some is physical, some emotional. There’s psychological pain and even phantom pain. Many would like to think their pain is worse than another’s, but after watching many people who I know live in pain, and then living it myself, I believe that it’s not so much the degree of pain as the permission one gives the pain to control life.

Yes, pain can be debilitating. However, I know folks who’ve had and have pain, crippling pain (yes, literally crippling). But it never stopped them. I didn’t think too much about it when I was ten and watched my grandmother’s body turn on itself. I saw the physical effects the pain had on her body, the twisted fingers and the fragile bones. She never stopped, and she never complained. I was ten. I assumed it wasn’t that bad. In fact during the sixteen years I was privileged to know her before she died, I don’t know if I ever realized she had pain.  And in the past 50+ years I’ve met many like her, people whose pain caused visible disability yet were never stopped by it.

On the other hand I’ve also known people who every ache was a complaint. The pain was/is disabling. Their life completely stops because of the pain. I can’t say whether it’s worse pain than my grandmother and others like her have experienced. Even if these people sat next to my grandmother, there’s no way to know which pain is the worst . . . except perhaps a SED rate . . . that might be an interesting test.

What I do know is the pain for this second group of people has more power. And after years of watching people, I’m inclined to believe it’s power granted by the one who suffers.

Everything I’ve ever heard or read from a medical professional says that those who quit moving because of the pain will experience more pain. And more pain means even less movement for these folks. And this is my experience as well.

Those who dwell on the pain, those who allow the pain to be in control become more and more controlled by the pain. Those who refuse to stop because of the pain, still have pain, but it seems more bearable.

This is not to say we don’t need medicine for the pain. Whether it’s physical, emotional, psychological or other, often we need help. And there should never be any shame in doing everything we can to make it better. But God has created us with a great capacity to heal, and much of that healing seems to be taking authority over the pain. To not allow it to control us anymore than it needs to. (and even that will be different person to person)

There’s no way for me to tell if you are allowing your pain to control you more than it should. However, I have determined that those who talk about their pain more seem to be the ones who give the pain more power.

So in my situation, you’ll probably hear me talk about my pain from time to time because it hurts and I don’t like it. However, if you hear me say I can’t do something because of the pain, go ahead and question me . . . ask me if the activity will make it worse . . . ask me if I want to give the pain the authority to control me . . . because I intend to control my life even when I can’t control the pain.

 

More about the Polymyalgia Rheumatica

So, after really thinking about this “condition,” I’m starting to wonder if it started years ago. The TIA I had in 2016 could have triggered it I suppose, although the things that are making me wonder about when it started didn’t appear till 2013.

That was the year I started gaining weight. My doctor attributed it to my age and slowing metabolism, but I started gaining a pound a month. I finally started eating more protein and complex carbs and got it under control, but I still haven’t lost those pesky pounds.

It was the next Summer I noticed my hips started hurting.  I didn’t even tell the docs about this one! I assumed it was because I’m over 50. They didn’t really hurt that bad. It was a little difficult to put pants on some days, but never horrible. I remember the date because in 2013 I walked all night for our Relay for Life Team, but that year I couldn’t.  I had to take a lot of breaks.

It was the next year I noticed my hands didn’t work the way I wanted them to from time to time.  It was most evident in my handwriting. I really like the way I write, and I just didn’t seem to have the control I’d always had. I had a little bit of numbness now and then, but no pain really. So, again, I never told a doctor.

Right around Easter of 2016 I had a horrific bout with what seemed to be sciatica. It was excruciating! I went to a chiropractor, had some x-rays taken and got some exercises from a Physical Therapist. This seriously may have just been a problem with my sciatic nerve but now I have to wonder.

It was that same year that my stomach felt funny a lot and my shoulders began to hurt a bit. Neither was anything I considered to be major. I attributed them to my age. But the shoulders especially may have been the beginning of all this.

By the end of the year, I felt exhausted all of the time. My brain was in a fog a lot. I even told my neurologist and PCP. Both thought I needed to exercise more (and I probably do)

The most disconcerting thing is that I got till I have problems singing. My throat feels tight and weak all the time. The ENT gave me Flonase and said some of it was caused by Acid Reflux, but even after taking care of those two problems, I can’t count on my voice to be strong.

Finally, last fall, I remember thinking if I don’t figure out a way to exercise my eyelids, I’m going to have to have surgery to keep them open. I attributed it to being tired all the time, but now I have to wonder, are my eyelids heavy because I’m tired or do I feel tired because the muscles in my eyelids are effected.

I still have no idea how much of this is related to the way I feel now, but I think some of this is more than coincidence.

I and an EMG (Electro Myography) this week. It looks like all of my nerves are working OK. I see Doc in June to get the results . . . until then . . .

The Devil is a Liar

It’s true . . . The Devil is a Liar.

But you probably knew that.

I’m pretty sure everyone has heard that Lucifer lies, and for the most part, I think Christians, even nominal ones, believe it. But something I’ve learned over the years is that humans don’t often live what they say they believe.

Many years ago I attended a retreat once or twice a year. We were not allowed to mention occupations during the entire retreat, so at the end we had to tell folks our name and something about ourselves. I remember one time a bunch of clergy wives were there. The first one said her name and said, “I sleep with my pastor!” The room busted, and several of us followed suit, “I sleep with my pastor, too!” It was fun!  We also went on to tell about our day job or our children.

I’ve had a number of day jobs, from waitress to receptionist, store clerk, layout designer and more.  But at the time I wanted to sing. I was performing a few times each month with a band, and soon after I was doing solo concerts. So I decided to start introducing myself like that, “Hi, I’m Lynne. I’m a singer/songwriter.” I knew if I wanted that to be who I was I needed to embrace that identity myself. I obviously wouldn’t e able to convince anyone else I was a singer/songwriter if I didn’t believe it.

I think we Christians need to do the same thing.

We need to embrace our identity in Christ and begin to say it out loud even if we don’t believe it.

The enemy reminds us constantly of our faults and failures. We bury the past, and he digs it up like a dog that’s found a bone in the backyard. That bully can smell our insecurities, and he plays on them.

But just like a human bully, the best thing we can do is ignore him or stand up to him.

When you hear your spiritual bully whisper those lies in your ear, I want you to ask yourself, “What do I know to be true?”

Here are a few truths to get your started:

Ephesians 2:13 But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far away have been brought near by the blood of Christ.

Ephesians 5:8 For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Live as children of light

Colossians 1:21-22 Once you were alienated from God and were enemies in your minds because of your evil behavior. 22 But now he has reconciled you by Christ’s physical body through death to present you holy in his sight, without blemish and free from accusation

1 Peter 2:10 Once you were not a people, but now you are the people of God; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy.

I am near God. I am Light. I am holy. I have no blemishes. No one has any reason to accuse me of anything (not even me). I’ve received mercy and pardon. I am loved by the Creator of the Universe.

The enemy needs reminded often of these truths. When we hear the lies of the enemy, it’s imperative we begin to speak these truths over our lives. Say them out loud so the enemy can hear! Remind him of whose you are!

And until you believe you are who Christ says you are, perhaps listening to this song over and over will help you:  Matthew West, Child of the One True King

 

More on Guns

So many folks have asked my opinion about guns lately. They did it on Facebook, so I’m not sure they meant it. I started to reply to two people, but decided to put it here instead so those who wanted to read it could, and perhaps I wouldn’t get the hate replies I’d see otherwise.

One friend understands a total ban of guns isn’t the answer, and she mentions love, hope and faith.

My thoughts . . . banning guns won’t make a difference. Stricter laws won’t make a difference. Most of the ones used are gained illegally. They are breaking the law to take the gun on school property.
 
This friend is correct, we’ve lost our center of love, faith, and hope. Throughout history, when that center has been Yahweh and then Yeshua there has been care for the neglected and forgotten. In every time period, the people who respected life the most were true followers of Yahweh and Yeshua.
 
Jesus Christ has been proven to change the hearts of people, yet, even Christianity today isn’t what it should be. We water it down to make it palatable, and it becomes destructive. Again, proven through history. Many nations embraced Christianity, but they had to make it work for their society, and when they changed Christianity to meet their needs, their nation crumbled. They tried to “win people to Christ” by means with which Christ never asked them to, and gave Christianity a bad name.
 
Today, in America, a nation who tolerates Christians at best, people don’t feel loved. They don’t understand respect.
 
Even if you take out the Christian aspect, if children were just taught to respect others, much of this would stop. I read a statistic from Japan about their “deaths by gun” (which I believe is skewed because it’s an unbelievably low number) and one thing in that country that would create a lower percentage is that they instill utmost respect for others into their children.
 
Even those with terrible mental health . . . if value of life had been instilled in them at a young age, taking a gun and killing others would not be one of their early instincts. There would be so many other signs that it would be much more obvious there was a danger. There’d still be a few cases that would slip through, but by and large, what is instilled in us as children is difficult for us to overcome . . . bad and good.  The mentally ill who have been learned to value life and respect others will take their own life before they will take another.
But today, kids are given war games as early as six years old. Life is something that regenerates and killing and blood are nothing. We have a desensitized population.
Respect is a bad word, unless of course you are under 20 and the one being “disrepected.” Didn’t anyone ever tell those kids they don’t deserve respect. They deserve to be treated with love, with compassion, but not respect. Respect is earned, and sometimes it’s earned through title . . . teacher, principal, doctor, president.  These titles get my respect even when the person holding them hasn’t earned my trust.
And more and more folks want to ban guns or types of weapons. That was the lament of my second friend.  As much as I’d like to agree because I don’t think they are necessary, I believe this is a dangerous practice. History has proven that if a government is given too much absolute power it will become corrupt (or it is corrupt if it seeks that kind of power). If the people are unarmed they become susceptible to an evil government. Most tyrannical leaders and governments who were able to wield any power in the past have begun with disarmed citizens.
I understand it’s a delicate topic, but let’s take the focus off the weapon!  Stop it! Find ways to help those who are so disturbed they feel the need to take a weapon to a school.  How badly have they been hurt, even unintentionally, in that place to feel like that’s the place to begin their killing spree.
Put a great counselor/psychologist in every school, someone who will meet with every child in the school every quarter and be available to show love and compassion to those who aren’t getting it at home.
Force parents to show respect to teachers, even those they don’t like. The schools should quit bending to parents who think their child should get their own way every time.  Force parents to force their children to follow the rules. No excuses. I’ve seen kids with ADHD follow the rules, yes, they need a bit more understanding, but they showed me respect and I could tell they were doing their best to follow the rules even when their bodies were rejecting sitting still.
A person willing to kill children in a school has been emotionally scarred.  Let’s stop that!  Let’s enforce policies which don’t allow one teacher to be with one student. Let’s help children understand that is never allowed no matter what the teacher says. Let’s give more love to children who don’t know where they have to go each night after school because they have a split family and go to grandma’s house two nights a week, dad’s one night and mom’s another.  Let’s keep an eye on kids who are with babysitters a lot. When they show signs of even a little abuse, let’s investigate.
Why aren’t there free clinics for those who feel like they need to kill someone. Why don’t I see billboards for that as often as I see ones for those who want to quit gambling.  I’m pretty sure the casinos are required to put up those billboards, let’s start a free hotline and ask the gun companies to fund those billboards (I bet they would – without legislation).
There are a lot of things that could happen to help this situation, but the focus is so skewed toward gun regulation that the people who need help aren’t getting it.
Stop discussing guns!!!
Start discussing humans!!!

Relationships – Part three – Restoration

You can read part one of this article HERE

Another misnomer about forgiveness is the restoration of the relationship. Some folks won’t forgive because they think the relationship must be restored to its original status, and they are afraid of being betrayed again.

This is tricky. Because it’s easy in our humanness to decide we’ve been hurt beyond repair. We won’t allow the relationship to be healed. But the truth is oftentimes relationships are able to be healed if both parties are willing. Unless the offender has betrayed or abused you, and you know the betrayal and abuse will not stop, there’s a good chance restoration is an option.

Especially if you are being abused, the relationship does not have to be restored until the abuser has taken all the steps necessary to get help and you know you are safe. Forgiveness is still important for your health, but restoration can’t come until the abuser is willing to admit his or her problem and get lots of help and healing. Not even the promise of counseling is enough to walk back into an abusive relationship.

Even God has standards for restoration. In order for us to be restored to the relationship humans had with our Creator in the Garden of Eden, we first have to be made new by accepting Christ’s sacrifice for our sins. God forgives long before we ask, but the restoration occurs when we meet his conditions. Human relationships can be the same.

Not that it gives us permission to set up unrealistic conditions and expectations. We don’t get to be dictators or give ultimatums on what has to happen for a relationship to be restored, but in the case of abuse or betrayal, we are allowed to protect ourselves and those around us before a relationship is restored.

There are offenses which are less drastic, though. In fact, most relationship busters are not abusive, most don’t include betrayal. Most are caused by misunderstanding and human error. Many are set off by difference of opinions or judgement. In each of these cases, full restoration is possible if both parties are willing to admit their part in the problem and then offer full and unconditional forgiveness.  But both of those things are hard.

Relationships aren’t easy. But they’re worth it if you’re willing to work on it a bit.

Relationships – Part Two

If you stumbled upon this post and haven’t read part one, you can read it HERE.

Another thing I’ve discovered about relationships is that they require us to understand we are in community with other human beings. There are going to be problems. I am not going to like every thing every single person in my circle does every single day.  Even the most well meaning human being will let us down from time to time. We’ll get our feelings hurt or be offended. It’s gonna happen! The thing that makes for a successful or unsuccessful relationship is how it’s handled. Once a person comes to that realization, they’ll have a much better time making relationships work.

The last time I talked about each person taking responsibility for his or her part in the schism. But what’s next? And by next, I mean first . . .

Even before the other person takes responsibility for his or her actions, I have to forgive, just let it go, don’t take offense. It’s easier when I remember I’ve probably offended someone else in a similar way, and I hope they’ve forgiven me. And it’s one hundred times easier since I’ve come to the realization that all my faults caused Christ to be crucified, and He forgave me, loves me and wants a fully restored relationship with me.

But forgiveness is hard. I know.

One of the main things people need to understand is that forgiveness does not excuse the offense, it merely removes it’s hold on YOU. You forgiving is NOT the same as saying, “It’s OK, do it again.” It’s simply saying, “I don’t want this to cause me anymore pain, so I’m releasing it. I’m no longer going to hold it against you.” I think that makes some forgiveness a little easier. So many people believe that forgiveness excuses a person or gives them permission to cause the offense again. It doesn’t. Even Jesus told the woman, “Go and sin no more.” She was forgiven, but He didn’t want her to returning to the life that caused her need for forgiveness.

Holding on to unforgiveness is like grasping the end of chains that are anchored to a wall and refusing to let go. Those chains hold you, but by your choice. You are bound, just like a prisoner, except you could let go. Sin is much the same, except sin puts us in shackles, and Jesus’ death on the cross holds the key to loose them. But either way, you’re stuck. You may as well be the one who committed the offense because whether you are the offender or the one offended, without forgiveness, both are bound by chains that keep them from the true peace and freedom Christ came to bring.

This article is continued HERE

 

Relationships

The topic of relationships has come up a lot lately. So I thought I’d share my views on what it takes to have a healthy relationship here.

The most difficult thing about relationships is they require two individuals who might have different views and ideas to get along. In nearly every growing relationship, there will come a time when there’s a disagreement, someone’s hurt or misunderstood and division happens. But there is one major thing I’ve discovered about reconciliation in a relationship:

If you want true relationship, you have to take responsibility for your part in any disagreement.
Matthew 5:23-24 says:
23 “Therefore, if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother or sister has something against you,24 leave your gift there in front of the altar. First go and be reconciled to them; then come and offer your gift.

It doesn’t tell us, “If you did something wrong on purpose.” It says, “If your brother or sister has something against you.”  And if that’s the case, we’re supposed to make the first move. Don’t wait for them to come to you. Don’t assume it will blow over, and most especially, don’t tell yourself you’ve nothing to apologize for.

Whether it’s real or perceived, if your friend feels wronged, you need to take responsibility. Just apologize . . . sincerely. I’ve decided even if the problem is someone took my words wrong or out of context, I need to admit that I probably wasn’t paying attention to God or to their feelings. Not only do I need to apologize to my friend, I also need to talk to my heavenly Father, because if I’d been paying attention, He’d have kept me from saying the wrong thing or helped me form my sentences in such a way they wouldn’t offend.

The major problem with this part of the reconciliation is that in order for the relationship to be wholly restored, both parties have to be willing to admit they’re part of the problem. It takes two to fight.

Perhaps you feel like you were the one wronged. Maybe it’s the other person who said all of those offensive words. Is there a chance you misunderstood? Were you hurt by something that was said when other pressures were the real issue? Did you forget to stop and see the situation from the other person’s perspective? Each and every one of those things (and more) are reasons to take responsibility for part of the problem. Too many times we’re quick to take offense when no offense was intended. Not everyone says exactly what they mean, and even if they always do, sometimes our ears don’t hear it the way it was meant. If you are quick to take offense, take responsibility for that! When someone comes to apologize, and even if they don’t, reciprocate the apology. Take responsibility for your part of the schism and begin the healing process.

So often I see wonderful relationships thrown away because one person chose to hold on to the offense or put all the blame on the other person.  Time and time again I’ve witnessed one person apologizing for everything, even things that weren’t their fault, while the second person allows them to take all the blame. And you’d think that might work, you’d think as long as one person was willing to accept all the blame and apologize for it, the other could just maintain their innocence and move forward.

But it doesn’t work! I’ve never, ever seen it mend relationship.

Until both people are willing to admit they made a mistake, even if it was innocent and unintentional, the relationship will never be truly whole. It may have a bandage for a while, but the gangrene will grow, and eventually any kind of connection you had with the other person will disintegrate.

The only time there’s any chance of that working is in the case of abuse. If you are being abused or have been abused, please don’t look for your part in the abuse. You will never do anything to deserve to be beaten or verbally attacked. Yes, there may be other things you’ll need to take responsibility for to be whole yourself, but there is nothing anyone can ever do or say that constitutes or excuses abuse. And if you are a person who has to belittle someone with words, explodes when you’re angry or causes someone else pain to make your point, get help! You are an abuser, take responsibility so you can restore your relationships.

So, step number one in keeping a healthy relationship – recognize you aren’t perfect. Take responsibility for those times when your words or actions have caused a rift in the relationship. Acknowledge those occasions you’ve taken offense when no offense was intended. Apologize and forgive, and remember the one you’re in relationship with is just as human as you.

This article continues HERE

Blessed . . .

Some call it privileged. I call it blessed. I am thankful for the advantages I’ve had in my life, each provided to me by the culture in which I was raised. I don’t take for granted that I was brought up by two parents who loved me and gave me healthy boundaries that kept me safe, but allowed me to become my own person. I know not every person gets to have an extended family of grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins and more to make them feel loved, appreciated and part of something bigger than themselves. I understand that because of my heritage I was able to learn things faster than some, and because of prayers that were lifted for me generations before I was born I am now living a life that some call privileged. I am humbled and in awe of this blessing I’ve been given, and I try to pass along my blessing to others when I’m able.

Not long ago I read a blog post by an African American woman. It was very well written. She had a healthy view of what she called white privilege. It was in response to a question a white male friend of hers had posed. If I could find the link again, I’d share it. She was eloquent in helping her friend understand his white male privilege.

Then yesterday I watched a video of what I assume was a professor attempting to teach a college aged group of individuals about privilege, and he had me clear to the end.

He started out with everyone in a single line facing him with a hundred dollar bill offered to the one who could get to him the fastest. Then he gave “advantages” to show what “privilege” is. Those who were raised in a two parent home were allowed to take two steps forward. A father being present, never having to worry about where the next meal was coming from and more gained each of the qualifying participants two steps toward hundred dollar bill. It was a beautiful example of privilege.

Then he lost me . . . at the very end he brought color and ethnicity into it. And while I will never deny these factors seem to effect some people groups more than others, these cultural differences defy color and ethnicity, and to bring those factors into the mix brings division where division doesn’t need to be.

Additionally, he missed an opportunity to show these folks how they could give themselves a boost when their culture tries to hold them back. Some of the young people took advantage of the two steps and made them leaps while others just took two normal steps forward. Several who got an advantage couldn’t have run fast if their life was on the line, while some left at the gate could have potentially passed even those who had a head start.

And life is like that. There are as many with “privilege” who take it for granted and waste it as there are those with none who use every speck as an opportunity to advance.

The professor also neglected to demonstrate that each of them have a bit of advantage over most of the world simply because they were raised in the United States of America. He didn’t ask who had running water and electricity. Some of those kids need reminded that as bad as they think they have it, there is always someone else who has it worse. And a few of those raised in those other countries have taken advantage of what they do have and have made it big in American sports, taking their new privilege back to their village and paying it forward.

I get it not everyone has all of the same opportunities as others. And I believe those who’ve gotten any blessing at all need to learn early to share those blessings with those who have less. Plus, I don’t want to minimize the despicable thing called discrimination, I realize it still exists, and it’s wrong . . . it’s just wrong. No one should be judged on the color of their skin, their gender, their religious or any other preferences. Every person who has integrity and is qualified and willing to do the job and work hard should be giving the same consideration.

However, I wish the media and those who are passionate about the discussion would start calling this divisive new title they’ve created what it really is . . . cultural privilege.  And I wish they’d stop making it sound like a bad thing. It’s a beautiful gift, one that should be cherished, not one to be ashamed of. It’s a gift that comes with a lot of responsibility, including the responsibility to help the less fortunate and treat every person with dignity and respect.

You see when we call it by what it is, we make it something that can be changed. If it’s white male privilege, I can’t overcome it. I can not change my gender. My black friend can not change his skin. But a family can change their culture. They can refuse to embrace those stereotypes which hold them back. They can put higher expectations on their children, and make them believe they can attain those expectations. Integrity can be taught and caught. Having a good work ethic can be instilled, and molding a person who believes He is a person of value can be accomplished. It’s more difficult when you are forced to live in a downtrodden culture, but it can be done. I know sometimes they’re hard to find, but there are churches who embrace every person who walks through the door and are just itching to help a family who wants to change their culture. One of my goals for my children was to surround them with a lot of adults who shared my values so they knew it wasn’t just me who had high expectations for them, and every mother in America can do that same thing.

It’s not white privilege. There are a lot of males of European descent who are living in poverty in America. Too many are caught in the culture of single parent homes and a latchkey lifestyle. More and more young people of every gender, color and ethnicity are turning to drugs and making unhealthy choices, and often it’s not their fault.  They are being raised in a culture that cultivates unhealthy choices.

I personally wish I could do more, but I do what I can. I try to mentor the young people Christ allows me to encounter, and I sponsor a couple of kids from other countries so they too can be raised out of the culture of poverty and realize someone from across the world cares.

It’s an elephant sized problem, but I believe it begins by taking the focus off of color, ethnicity and gender. Don’t tell kids they are automatically limited by things they can’t change. Help them to see that all of their limitations are just roadblocks, things that can be conquered with hard work. Yes, they may have to work harder than others, but changing color, ethnicity and gender are impossible, so let’s not give these any attention. The roadblocks the underprivileged face are not insurmountable, but they are roadblocks. There will be climbing, pushing, moving and hard work needed to get past them. And perhaps a little reminder of the proper way to eat an elephant . . . just one bite at a time.

 

It’s time . . .

I haven’t been here most of the Summer. Some of that is because it’s been a busy year. So much to do outside! It was such a beautiful Summer, not necessarily great for being poolside, but the temperature was tremendous and just enough rain that nothing turned brown in July or August.

But the main reason I wasn’t here was because I felt like I had nothing to say. And everything I thought about saying had the potential for someone to take it out of context and feel bad. Unfortunately, I’m still just co-dependent enough that the thought of someone being distraught because of something I wrote can completely shut me down.  So for the last few months I’ve been silent.

During the last few days, however, I’ve really felt as though it’s time to get back. I have ideas and aha moments almost daily, and not sharing them makes me feel anxious and depressed. Some I write in one of my journals (I have three or four), but often I want to just type . . . I can type so much faster than I can write.

OK . . . all that probably seemed like I was rattling on, but what it’s really done is given me a commitment to keep. It’s me publicly announcing (or as public as this gets since I really don’t have much of a readership), I’m going to start sharing here again on a regular basis.  It’s also a warning I guess that some of what you read here might not be what you want to hear. You are allowed to click off this page . . . I won’t even know. That’s why I put it here and don’t send it to any of my mailing lists. I save this space for my more controversial thoughts.  I guess what I’m really saying is . . .

I’m back . . .

Everlasting God

Today on the way home “Everlasting God” by Chris Tomlin played on the radio. At the end a child reads Isaiah 40:28-31. I praised God as the wee one read “Even the very young grow tired and weak. Young men stumble and fall. But the one who trusts in the Lord will have new strength. They will soar like eagles. They will run and not grow weary. They will walk and never faint.”

I recently was relieved of being a full-time caregiver when my mother-in-law went to be with Jesus. Now, if you don’t know me, you have no idea that natural care giver just isn’t the way anyone would have ever described me. Talk to my siblings, they’ll tell you. It’s a gift that just wasn’t in my wheelhouse.

However, in the almost two years I was Mom’s primary care-giver and the years before that I took care of some of the little “details” of her life, I never felt overwhelmed or anxious.

And those are two things I DO feel from time to time. Much less often now . . . now that I realize when I begin to feel that way it’s because I’m running my own show, not trusting in my Creator.

In my life, anytime I start to feel overwhelmed to the point of anxiety, I discover it’s ALWAYS because I’ve taken on a task or a burden that my Savior did not ask me to carry.

I know not all anxiety is caused by running ahead of the Holy Spirit. Some people need help because it’s hormonal or caused by a deeper mental scar. But for me, almost all of my severe anxiety is a direct result of trying to do things on my own without Christ and without His permission. When I truly wait on Him, I do feel light enough to soar like an eagle. When I let Jesus lead, I have confidence. When God is in control, I don’t grow emotionally weary.

I want that peace and inner energy that comes from following the One who loves me more than I can imagine.