Feb 032017
 

The printer spitting out papers in booklet format as I prepare for Hello Mornings new study and while I wait on that I go to Amazon and download a couple of free thrillers to read. I feel like an oxymoron with God on one side and crime thrillers on the other.

I know these are the complexities of being human though. Working our brains. Enjoying what we do while keeping a safe balance to it all.

For some struggling to keep things in the “safety zone” is the struggle though. Overindulgence being catastrophic to their wellbeing as they violently swing from one extreme to the next, never placing their feet firmly on the middle ground, or even recognizing what the middle ground is.

The pile of books at my bedside include my planner, my new MEV Bible, Fear Fighting by Kelly Balarie and Mary’s Diary –Jesus Through His Mothers Eyes by Marilyn Friesen. The pile inside of my iPad tends to be where the other books go. The ones I love to read but don’t want to spend the money on because I know I will likely never read them again.

I feel like maybe I am not the only one who writes that has multiple books and multiple genres going at the same time. I used to be one who would sit down with a book and read it completely through before grabbing the next in the pile, I still do that with fiction, but I always have non-fiction and Christian books going too. And the Bible, I can read it front to back and never be finished with it!

I sing along to a Garth Brooks song and wonder how I never knew the song was his before. My mind in a constant state of multitasking while I try and avoid today’s latest news headlines, at least for now.

I wonder if the girlchild is up yet. She isn’t really a child anymore. At almost 15 she pretty much does everything for herself, except you know, cook, clean, pay bills, stay organized, etc; Pretty much a full on adult. -smiles-

Really, it’s not that I do much better. The water guy was in my house this morning for nearly three hours before knocking on my bedroom door to tell me he figured the water pressure was fixed now and that he was sorry for making the dog bark so much. I definitely don’t have this adulating thing down yet. Secretly, I hope that I never do.

I don’t want to stop running through empty parking lots and sliding on the ice or quit jumping off of snowbanks onto busy sidewalks in our small town. I don’t want to worry about singing the wrong lyrics to the song playing at the top of my lungs in a grocery store or walk in embarrassment and shame for being caught.

Maybe I have a bit of what I always called Peter Pan syndrome, the extreme desire to never grow up. I mean, yeah I have bills and I pay them, I have kids and responsibilities and a boyfriend who I love. I’ve never had a ticket and have done my best to stay on the right side, but there is no reason I have to give up my quirks because my age dictates I should.

Perhaps, we would all be a lot happier if we forgot the chores and laid in bed in our pj’s reading all day.

 

 The Promises of God Creative Journaling Bible is a double-column, widemargin Bible in the beautiful Modern English Version translation.  This unique Bible for craft enthusiasts is a wonderful resource for creative art journaling and coloring. Beautiful illustrations spread throughout the Bible, with both lined and blank margins, allow for a wide variety of creative uses. Scripture art is beautifully displayed on each of the sixtysix book introductions throughout the Bible, along with many other illustrations that can be colored to make the Bible customizable to your personality. Every page of Scripture features extra-wide 2.25” margins that include a variety of blank space, ruled lines, and illustrations for multiple creative uses. The 8-point font allows for comfortable reading, and the high quality off-white paper is optimal for creative art journaling.   

 
$21.99 USD
We all live with fear. It hangs around, whispering in our ears, reminding us of all we can’t do or will never be. But that’s not the end of the story. We also have a God who draws close to say, Fear not. I am with you. This Spirit transforms us into fear fighters–women breaking free of trepidation to find bold dedication to God’s peace-, purpose- and joy-filled callings.

With remarkable compassion born from personal experience, Kelly Balarie shows women how to

· Cultivate unstoppable faith by harnessing God’s Word and promptings
· Pray panic-, blood pressure- and stress-reducing prayers to usher in lasting peace
· Discover clear and immediate action plans to exchange worry for God’s greatest gifts
· Implement daily bravery decrees to stand armed through the day
· Participate in a 12-week study guide to foster new courageous habits
 
Kelly pulls back the curtain of fear so you can find the beautiful woman God created you to be.
Kindle Edition: Check Amazon for Pricing Digital Only
Dear Diary
I am so frightened. Someone saw of my diary scrolls and wants to get them distributed.
They are from a strange, far away place and are asking to stick them on the Internet and do other queer things with them.
Did I even spell that odd word right? I have NO idea what they are talking about.
Oh I wish Jesus was here so I could ask His advice, but He floated up to Heaven in a cloud.

But…on the other hand, it was such a wonderful, yet often terrifying experience raising Jesus from a little boy and watching Him develop into a strong caring Man. He brought joy, healing and peace to so many people and yet they killed Him in the most awful way imaginable!Maybe I should let those strangers do whatever they think is best with my scrolls. It would be so nice if others could know how wonderful He really is. I sure hope no one in our village finds out, though, that I did something so outlandish! They’d never understand what happened to me.
Love, Mary

Kindle Edition: Check Amazon for Pricing Digital Only
Feb 022017
 

He sat there absorbed in his video game and me in my book and as the hours ticked by I could see he was holding his breath more often, afraid to breathe but trying to ignore the silence of the phone. No news is good news, right?

Finally, we laid down and slept for a few hours -smack in the afternoon and into the early evening, and his breathing relaxed, his stress slipped away as I watched him before dozing off myself.

When the phone rang it’s awful ringtone he shot out of bed like a cat, straight into the air and answered it quickly.

He held his breath when it was his dad and not his mom who said she would call when her surgery was over.

When his dad passed the phone to his mom the audible sigh of relief that escaped his body caused tears to roll down my cheeks, quickly swiped away by the blanket.

She was okay. He was okay. I was okay. We could breathe knowing his mama survived the surgery.

The holding your breath and doing your best to focus on the good and handing it to God thing seemed to be working through the day, it was a nice day, but lingering in the back of our minds was a part of our souls that just needed the know what God’s plan for us that day actually was.

Breathing out the negative and breathing in the relief felt fresh, new, amazing.

Suddenly we both wanted to eat and found ourselves thirsty, realizing we hadn’t done either all day as we did our best to stir our minds from the what-ifs.

It was only 2 days before that I was the strong one, standing on the stairs into the night speaking to his mama about her faith and her journey through the church, through life, and her telling me that I was reminding her to just trust God.

Why is it so much easier to say than do? Preach but not be preached to?

I hold my hands in reverence to the One who is in control of it all, whose plans I will never know until I am walking through them. To Him I give praise, because praise is deserved even in the darkest of days. Gratitude in the middle of chaos. He triumphs as I stumble. Picks me up when I fall. When the air is knocked from my soul, He breathes life back into me. CPR for the soul. The Bible my personal First Aid Kit!

Feb 022017
 

I go through the motions of the day like everyone else does while worrying about the everyday things like money and bills overdue and how I am going to find a way to pay them and then I place it all into God’s hands and do my best to continue, trusting that He has provisions for me and He will meet all my needs.

I am reminded of the Israelites wandering for forty years, given manna everyday and told never to take more than they need, or save any for later. Trust that the Lord will provide the next meal too.

A family that vlogs on YouTube who I began to follow over a year ago, because of a cleaning motivational video posted a life update today. The mom, Christy, was very upset as she sat in the car talking about her faith and her family and how their oldest son, 22 years old, passed away this week and that they have had to humble themselves before the Lord during this extremely difficult time, by having to start up a GoFundMe page just so they can pay for the funeral for their child that will be held this weekend.



And tears fall from my own eyes as I see how upset she is, how she knows to trust God but her heart is broken either way, how I have watched her shop thrift stores to care for her large family, how she has purposed to be more modest, shared her raw testimony and allows us in to her hectic homeschool life while working full time and still struggling to make ends meet.

My own anxieties and problems with money suddenly become trivial. Who cares about the credit card debt from years ago, at least I am not burying my child. My family is healthy. That could all change tonight or tomorrow or when the phone rings, but right now everyone is good and that is a blessing. That is todays manna. The sustenance that will sustain me, even if creditors are calling and threatening to ruin me, I cannot be ruined because Christ has me and he has my family and if/when something does happen, He will still stand firm and still give me exactly what I need as I need it.

Will Christy’s son be buried and have a lovely service? Yes! And, because of people who realize the need of this family who have put away a little bit here and there, Christy and her husband Jimmy SR will not have to worry about debt when they are mourning and looking for ways to be grateful and intentional.


We put so much value on “things” and “stuff” that when there is a tragedy like a young man, a child, passing away, our own lives are put into perspective and we strive to be more intentional and make the moments count. I don’t think anyone has ever lost someone and said they spent too much time with the person or have too many memories, rather people lose and then they feel guilt that they should have could have would have done more if only they knew.

In life, we rarely get to know any of these things ahead of time, but one thing is for certain, we are all on the same paths, regardless of time, and that is physical death. Our souls will rise and God will embrace. So, why don’t we live everyday like it is our last without having to be told we are dying?

My One Word for the year was “Intentional” and unfortunately it took someone passing away at a young age for my heart to shift to a place that reminds me to be more intentional with my children and family, and the ones I love.

God is absolutely amazing in allowing the negatives of our own lives, and the lives of others, to remind us of His Word and to live life to the fullest.

I ask that you pray for the Overlin family this coming week as they figure out what normal is as children of God and as parents to a son gone too soon. Placing their faith in Christ and knowing that their oldest boy is now sitting with the One Creator.

Live intentionally dear friends!

Oct 302016
 

I sold my soul and the Angels are Weeping.

I stare into better days as seen through my own mind in the form of drawings on paper and I am scared that I can see an island I will never see again, swim in a spot I grew up in. Everything has changed in the blink of an eye and strangely it’s a pain that I never expected, a permanency that I never thought could be felt. Yet each of those waves in the water that roll toward the shore and break are reminiscent of my heart. They depict a tragedy that 6 months ago I could not have foreseen.  Not emotionally anyway.

I had to find you, tell you I need you and beg to go back to the start and as I stare off into my drawings hanging on my walls I realize that there is no going back to the start. Today cannot be taken back and tomorrow will never again return.

Death is 100% permanent.

Life is 100% fatal.

So why can’t I handle this? Why isn’t it easy? Why do I yearn to watch my blood flow from me so that I know I am alive while simultaneously wanting to do whatever I can do make the pains of life stop –even if it’s just for a few minutes?

The water will never be that same shade of blue again. The sun will never feel so warm. The strength of a drink will never feel so good coursing through my veins. I sit here, and I weep. I cry out and my voice echoes off the empty walls of life.

The light on top of his corpse will never be as bright as it was the day it first started, a speck of light within his mothers’ womb, flicking on and off like a lightening bug in the cool summers night. Like blinking eyes glaring at you from just above the reeds.

Gone are the days of sleep overs and drawing on one anothers backs as we whisper to avoid waking up our grandparents. Secretly loving how good it feels to feel that finger run along your back while you guess what it is creating. Preparing you for an intimacy that seemingly will never come because if you accept that intimacy it may mean that you will never feel those tingles up your spine again, the caress down your back. The hands that hold your hair as you lay sick on the bathroom floor. The cousin who removed a rock from my elbow when I refused to let the aunt who was a nurse! Gone are those days, never to return, never for the children to replicate because now love and life has been replaced by technology where the words “I love you” come easily to so many and a friend is someone you have likely never even spoken to.

 If they can all leave us, one by one then whats to say tomorrow won’t be the same, hold the same pains, cut a little deeper, push a little harder. Why do we fight the inevitable?

Tell me you love me.

In this life and the next.

Tell me that next time around it won’t be this hard. That my heart won’t break 1000 times before I am 29.

Tell me that my babies are safe in the Heavens above and tell me that I will be someday soon as well.

Tell me that the only one who possesses me is the person whom I have given myself to and that that won’t ever go away. Stop tearing me apart. Stop making me bleed. Stop having me run in circles when I know that there is an off-ramp to a better place instead of being brought back to the start.

If you love me, won’t you let me know?

I am a shell of who I once was, a shell of who I no longer can be. I stare down and read my name on the grave and I realize just how cold I am and I wonder why the angels are weeping and my heart isn’t beating.

Oct 192016
 

This song has been a favorite of mine by Evanescence for years. I love the way they express the pain inside of my brain and that longing to be noticed while craving to go unnoticed all at the same time. PTSD is hard. Wanting to disappear has become a part of who I am. Knowing someone has felt the same, or close enough to have written the words and designed the music helps me to realize that my broken-self isn’t alone.

“Missing”

Please, please forgive me,
But I won’t be home again.
Maybe someday you’ll look up,
And, barely conscious, you’ll say to no one:
“Isn’t something missing?”

You won’t cry for my absence, I know –
You forgot me long ago.
Am I that unimportant…?
Am I so insignificant…?
Isn’t something missing?
Isn’t someone missing me?

[Chorus:]

Even though I’m the sacrifice,
You won’t try for me, not now.
Though I’d die to know you love me,
I’m all alone.
Isn’t someone missing me?

Please, please forgive me,
But I won’t be home again.
I know what you do to yourself,
I breathe deep and cry out,
“Isn’t something missing?
Isn’t someone missing me?”

[Chorus]

And if I bleed, I’ll bleed,
Knowing you don’t care.
And if I sleep just to dream of you
I’ll wake without you there,
Isn’t something missing?
Isn’t something…

[Chorus]

Oct 182016
 

Growing up my cousins were our neighbours on two sides. We played and shared and went frog hunting and tadpole catching in the ponds on our property. We ice skated with neighbour kids in winter and then one spring when I was 9 the police came and searched and searched some more for my older cousin who went missing.

They found his body 3 days later at the bottom of the highest cliff about a kilometer into our backyards, across the highway. They said that he had no stomach contents and that he had likely only been dead a few hours.

The official cause of death was suicide, the unofficial was blunt force trauma to his skull, presumably as he fell. How a 17 year old goes without food or water when a corner store and unlocked houses are within shouting distance, for several days never sat well with me. It didn’t sit well with the retired police chief who offered to look into it as a homicide and it didn’t sit well with my grandpa either.

My aunt and uncle didn’t want the help though, so the ruling was as is and the priest denied my cousin his last rites, because you can’t receive more than a blessing if you have taken your own life.

I tended his grave for years, going and wiping the fresh cut grass from the stone and making sure the solar light I bought was still lighting at night, the shepherds hook it hung on something I knew would help guide him to the Light and keep him there.

I don’t believe that suicide is a sin. I know a lot of people do, including the church. I have faith in a God who does not punish those who are mentally ill, and if you have ever been depressed or suicidal you know that there is no such thing as “rational” when in that state of mind. The act of suicide isn’t to cause pain, it’s a final and desperate attempt to end your own.

Whether suicide or homicide I have prayed that as my cousin flew to the ground below that he felt no fear, only peace and maybe even a moment of joy knowing that this act was the pathway to freedom from what we call life.

Oct 092016
 

Funny how over the years the words “Post-It” have caused flashes of ugly little squares of paper with a sticky back to flood the brain. Then you go to buy the darned things and see the cute owls and the off brands and you literally stand there wasting time debating price, color and cuteness all for a note that likely won’t stick.

A reminder that will be lost before it’s been forgotten.


I look through my Bible tabbed with Post-It’s the same way that my daughter has her textbooks tabbed. Interesting how something that I had only began doing that she didn’t know about is something I had spotted her doing the same. I wonder if this is normal or if its some form of inherited colour-coding mother-daughter neurotic trait. Lord knows our lives closely mimic each other without intention.

I guess it doesn’t matter too much though if we aren’t purposely trying to be like the other.

I don’t want her to be a yellow or pink or acid green Post-It note that everyone has or can achieve. I want her to be unique. Her own shade with her own tackiness.

I want her to make her own mistakes and be victorious over Satan slain. Even if each of us must crush that cursed serpents slithering head with the heel of boots of steel made for hard work again and again.

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