Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Part 2: More Junk



After my suicide attempt at 15, I tried to make my life better on my own. I began dating a wonderful man who is now my sweet loving husband. Although he helped me so much in those early years he would not be able to be the savior I needed. See, I had believed in my heart that if he married me then my life would be fulfilled. Soon after the honeymoon was over I realized that he was not the one that could fill that emptiness in my heart. It was like trying to put the square peg into the round hole. Mike did all that he humanly could to keep the junk out of my life but Satan keep send towards me from every direction. So again I tried to "fix" it on my own. I had a beautiful healthy baby boy. Little did I understand that each time I an attempt to clean out I only open myself open for Satan to add more guilt and shame in. I still had not learned the lesson. I attempted suicide 2 more times and gave birth to a little girl. I put on my perfect little mask as if everything was great when actually it was all falling apart inside me. I, me, myself had tried all that I could to make myself "right". I had turned to everyone around me expecting them to fill my needed but they did not because they could not. Finally one night about 8 years ago I called out to God not for him to help me but for Him to send me a friend, someone that could listen to me and help me. Although it was not the most sincere prayer ever prayed He still heard me and answered me. That dear friend that He sent to me in turn took me to back to Him by loving me and inviting me to church. One night after attending church regularly for about 3 months God touched my heart in such away that I could not turn away from Him. I know in that moment that He was the answer I had been looking for.
I dedicated myself to Christ and my life changed. I want to be sure that I do not leave with the impression that now my life is all wonderful with no more bouts of depression and not troubles because it is not. The change - the difference is now I have the peace to walk though those storms because I know that I have a Father looking over me. He has guided me to a wonderful doctor that has worked with my physical needs through medicine. I deal with the emotional needs with prayer and close Christian friends. But at the core of it all I realize that He has a plan for me and I have to stick around to fulfill that plan.

He has a plan for each of you also (Jer 29:11).

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

My Junk Drawer

How many people have a “junk” drawer in their home? You know the drawer that holds all those things that you need only occasionally and some things that you are not if sure of what they are. I think my family has a junk drawer in every room. These drawers did not start out as junk drawer. They were just regular drawers that slowly day after day accumulate the junk of life and became what they are….junk drawers. I have tried many times to organize, rearrange and clean them out but they clutter up again.
As I was searching through one of those drawers today I realized what an analogy that drawer was for my earlier years. I grew up as normal and regular as you can be. I had a very loving and caring family with mom, dad, brother and sister. We were involved in church, school and community. Life was good for me. However, at around the age of 12 or 13 the junk of life started coming in. Self-doubt, worry, contempt, fear, and a multitude of other thoughts all bombarding me from various sources yet really all from the father of lies(junk), Satan. Eventually, just like a junk drawer or room, my life became out of control and overflowing from the junk. I knew I had to put a stop to Satan’s endless stream of junk but unfortunately at the age of 15 and with limited coping skills I made the only choice I thought I could. I decided to take my life but God had another plan. Although He spared my life that cold December night I still did not turn to Him to allow him to clean up my junk.





I will share the rest of my junk drawer at a later date as I am praying for God to lead to that next step.

Monday, November 30, 2009

WHY???

I started this blog over a month ago with a certain purpose in mind. God had called me to began speaking. He called me to began sharing my testimony. Why ??? After about 18 months with no doors opening to speak He impressed on me to start this blog. Why ??? I believe the reason is to share my story. To tell how far he has brought me. Why ??? Will my story really matter ? Will I be able to find the words to fully express how much He has loved me. Why does He love me ??? In the few months. That question of Why, has been in the foremost front of my mind. I pray that in the next few days or weeks He will give me the words to adequately tell you all where I was, how He came to meet me there and how He has walked with me since.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Become 1 Leper

17Jesus asked, "Were not all ten cleansed? Where are the other nine? 18Was no one found to return and give praise to God except this foreigner?" 19Then he said to him, "Rise and go; your faith has made you well." Luke 17:17-19

This Thanksgiving week are you like the one that returned to give thanks and praise to Christ or are you like the other 9 that never returned. Our pastor preached on Luke 17:11-19 this past Sunday. We often are thankful for the “things” we have and the people we have in our lives but how many time do we stop and just thank God for the breathe He puts in our lungs each second. And even more than that do we ever thank Him for the pain and trials that we go through.
As we get together with family and friends over this holiday not only thank Him for the material things but express your thankfulness to Him for the Cross

Sunday, November 15, 2009

One Car = One Soul

The world and its desires pass away, but the man who does the will of God lives forever.
I John 2:17 NIV

This past week was one of those weeks that cause your mind to re-focus and ponder on the things in life that truly matter. Let me explain:

On Monday morning when I got in the office I found out that one of my co-worker's mother had passed away over the weekend. So that day was spent in prayer for the family, arranging to send flowers and going to the funeral home for visitation.

Tuesday morning brought more sad news. After only being in the office a couple of hours I received word that another co-worker's father in law had passed away early that morning. Since this funeral was out of town I would be unable to attend but all the same sadness and sentiment that I had felt on Monday came over me again.

The wild mixture of emotion continued on Wednesday, Veteran's Day, as I stood on the sidewalk watch the tribute that was being paid to the men and women that had served our country. How do you say thank you to those people? How do we even begin to repay them? How do we allow our children to forget?

Praise God the Thursday brought no additional news.

I arrived at to my office Friday morning and was there alone. I really was just unmotivated to work and I caught myself staring out the widow. From my perch on the 21st floor of the building this is what I saw…..



I sat there for several minutes watching these cars coming and going, to and from whatever their day holds. I begin to think that in each one of those cars is at least one soul and my concern grew. Tears flowed down my face as the questions started rolling through my head. Where is that soul? Does he/she know Christ? Are they just wondering through their daily routine with no thought of eternity? Are they seeking and searching, lost in their in need for God? Do I really care? Do I hurt and weep over those individual souls as Jesus does? Why do I and so many others sit still in our salvation while others are unaware of the peace and joy God has to offer them?

There are lost souls around us each day and in all situations. What are we going to do to reach them?

Monday, November 9, 2009

This is only a test

I have not been seeing the comments link on the last post that I put up. I have made some changes I hope I have corrected the error.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Pebbles in his Pants

"Because you are precious in my eyes, and honored, and I love you, I give men in return for you, peoples in exchange for your life. " ISA 43:4 ESV

Recently, I was going through some boxes that had a few of the treasures from my children’s kindergarten years and I found one of Anthony’s most prized possessions of that time: a rock. It was just a plain rock. It was not a precious stone or a shining crystal but just a simple rock. While I sat in his room holding the rock in my hand I felt the sting of tears in my eyes as well as laughter bubbling up in me.
When he was about 3 or 4 years old I would have to empty handfuls for playground pea gravel out of his pockets every evening when I would pick him up at daycare. This daily pocket checking/empting just became a natural part of our routine and then one day there was no gravel. There was none in the front pockets and none in the back pockets, none in the jeans pockets and none in the jacket pockets. I was so please and thought that we were finally past this “rock loving” phase.
Later that evening as I picked up his jeans off the bathroom floor one tiny piece of pea gravel fell and rolled across the floor, then another one and finally many more started spilling out of the cuffs of those jeans. I gathered up the all of his little treasures and went to his room to have yet another discussion with him. I questioned his fascination with these small, plain, ordinary stones. Why did he cherish them so much?
He lowered his head, looked back up at me through those cute little blue glasses and said, “Momma, each one is so special."
I replied, “But they are all same. Why do you have to bring them ALL home?”
“No, they are not all alike. Each one is special. See this one is brown with darker spots, this one is pink and shiny and this one is gray with lines on it……” He went on and on to list something exclusive about each one I held in my hand.
My eyes still fill with tears today remembering that story because it makes me some what understand why Jesus holds us so dear. All the marks, scars and imperfections we see in ours lives are the exact things God sees as our uniqueness that He will/can use for His glory. He hides us in the covering of His blood just as Anthony hid his pebbles in his pant’s cuff.

Friday, October 30, 2009

High School Homecoming week

My daughter is a junior in high school this year and this week was homecoming week. I am not sure what the traditions in other places are but the area we live in celebrate homecoming week of the football season by different dress up days. This year Samantha's school had Pajama day on Monday. Since she just wore sweatpants and a t-shirt there are not any pictures. I do want to share pictures of the rest of the week.

Tuesday - Decades Day




Wednesday - Nerd Day




Thursday - Character Day



Friday- School out for weather so no dress up

The finally picture I want to share is so you can see just how beautiful she is.


Friday, October 23, 2009

Faithful in little

"His master replied, 'Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master's happiness!'" Matthew 25:21

This week God has just knocked me over with a lesson I should have learned a long time ago. Back in the summer of 2008 God called me to to began sharing my story of depression, bi-polar, suicide attempts and His saving love, grace and mercy. I spoke a couple of times to our church during special services but God was calling me to do more. In December 2008 I finally agreed with God and even shared with my women's group that I was going to start a speaking ministry. Then I waited and waited and waited. I waited for the right words to come. I waited for an opportunity to speak to be opened to me but these things never came. I prayed for the last several months asking God why he called me to this ministry and then shut all the doors. I felt so lost and alone not able to hear His reply. Finally, early this week as I read the Parable of the Talents, a story I have heard and read since I was little I heard my answer for God. His direct and clear words were, " How can I trust you in the bigger ministry I have called you to if you are not faithful to the little things I have called you to." See there are things that God has told me to do such as speak to a certain person, buy someone groceries or spend more time with Him. These are the small things that I have not been faithful in so therefore, He has not given me the bigger calling. I compare it to a parent not allowing a child to go to a party because they have not fulfilled the agreement to clean their room. Since I have learned this lesson and taken it to heart by asking my Father to forgive me He has opened several doors.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

WAVE ON WAVE

“You quieted the raging oceans with their pounding waves and silenced the shouting of the nations.”
Psalms 65:7

Have you ever just sat on the beach and watched as the waves crested and then slammed down on the beach? The waves come one after another. As one hits the beach, one is cresting and another one is just building.
That is the best way I can explain the way my thoughts were being tossed about in my mind yesterday morning. I was on my drive into the office as these many thought waves came: a wave of worry for a meeting my daughter would be having at school, concern for a friend’s family, unease over medical test my dad would be having and the waves just continued to crash in my mind. All of these were things I had no control over neither in my mind nor in reality.
I turned off my regular morning radio show and just cried out to God. I cried all my worries, all my hurt, all my angry, all my regret along with all my praise and thanksgiving for about 45 minutes. As I entered the office parking deck I began drying my tears. I turned the radio back on and I put it on the Christian music station. The song playing was “How He Loves” by David Crowder Band.
God spoke to us through that song even though I had heard it many times. I realized that no matter what is going in my life He loves us. Because He loves us He will take care of us. Because He loves us He will work all things out for His glory. Because of His love, He gives us our family and friends to encourage and support us. All we are is because He loves us.
So next time the waves start coming one after another instead of allowing them to drown you, let them wash His love over you.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Stuck in the Swamp Again

We have a beautiful pond in front of our house. This pond is feed by a small stream that flows through our yard underground. Most of the time the stream goes unnoticed that is until we have a large amount of rain falls in a short time, then it becomes swamp like. This is exactly what happened a few weeks ago. Because of the rain, the grass grown and needed had to be cut. While Mike did the trim work with the weed-eater I rode the new and larger than normal John Deere lawnmower. In my attempt to complete the whole two and a half acres in one day, I thought that the “swamp” was dry enough to drive through. Boy was I ever wrong. After a couple of attempts to go forward, back up, turn the wheel one way, and then turn the wheel another way, I had to admit I was stuck. I yelled for Mike to come help get me out. He hooked the 4-wheeler to the front of the mower, and pulled it slowly out of the thick muck and mire. After he checked it to make sure nothing was wrong he said, “Finish the rest of the lawn. I’ll take care of this part later.” I cut a few more rounds, all the time trying to think of how to get the tall unsightly grass cut out of the swamp. I knew Mike had said don’t worry about it but he had his hands full weed-eating the ditches, around the trees, and all the way around the pond by himself. So, yes, you guessed it. I decided to wander off into the swamp again, and yes, I got stuck again. I called for Mike’s help, and although I knew he was a little upset and a lot frustrated with me, he came to my rescue. Once he had pulled the now mud-brown John Deere out of the swamp, he asked, “Why did you drive through there again?” I replied, “I thought if I went in at a different angle I would be able to make it through.”

As I finished cutting the lawn, away from the swamp, God revealed to me that my tendency to look at some sins in the same way I viewed that swamp. I thought if I tried to go into a sinful area at a different angle and with a different attitude, or perhaps days later, I would make it through on my own. Yet, just as with the swamp, I continue to find myself stuck and trying to maneuver my own way out. It is not until I call on God that I am finally pulled from the miry clay and set back on solid ground.

I have been stuck in a sin swamp many times. At times I have tried to go back into a situation at a different angle. Once knee-deep and unable to free myself I realize that it is only God who can rescue me. He needs only to hear me call out to him, and He reaches down to pull me out of that muck and mire I had gotten myself in to.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Welcome to Harmony!

I have been lead to write a blog for the last few months but felt very incompetent as I surfed through bloggerville read all the wonderful tales everyone has to share. The more I read the more the thoughts of, "Am I really capable of writing something that others would want to read and that will think deeper or feel more?" and " Will my words be adequate to be used by God to inspire, uplift and/or encourage other?" Because of my fears and doubts I just wrote in my personal journal but God continued to tug at my heart to share my stories with others. Once I finally said YES to God's calling I was stunned with the way He opened my heart and my eyes to all the ways He has taught and is still teaching my life lessons. It is my prayer that He will use these lessons, as I share them here, to bless you.

Once I came to agree with God about this blogging thing, I tried to find just the "right" title for it. All the other blogs I had been reading had either very cute, catchy or deeply meaningful titles. As I compiled my list I found that what I had come up with was either taken or they didn't really fit. Then one night as I was spending some quite time writing in my journal and praying God spoke to my heart "Living in Harmony". Why did I decide this was perfect title fit for my blog? Harmony is the name of the small community I have called home for the last 22 years. It is the place that God has truly grown my heart to desire to live in harmony with Him. So “Living in Harmony” has the double meaning of the physical place I live as well as the spiritual place I desire to live.
I would love to know about how others came up with the titles to their own place in the cyberspace. I think the title can tell a lot about the blogger and their passion/desire.