Friday, January 28, 2011


To the T.V. show described in my last post:

1.   After having gone through what we may think to be the worst ordeal  in our lives and surviving, we sometimes want to sit down and rest basking in our victory.  
2.   Satan loves to catch us off guard.  This is when He takes the opportunity to sneak into our lives and lure us into situations that could corrupt us morally and hurt others in the process.
3.   Everything around us has been turbulent.  Now finally we are sailing in smooth, calm waters, maybe still weary from the rough times behind us. So we may not hear or see that He has arrived on the scene.  Hence, Sneaky Snake. (see my post, "The Fixer")
4.   God gives us the insight we need.  He allows us to wake from our slumber and see, hear, and feel what is truly going on around us.
5.   Another fight for survival.
6.   Decisions to make.
7.   Lose faith? Lose hope?
8.   Or believe that help is on the way. "My help cometh from the Lord...The Lord is thy keeper... He shall preserve thee from evil..." Psalms 121: 2a, 5a, 7a
9.  Taste the most wonderful thing we will ever taste! " Oh taste and see that the Lord is good: blessed is the man that trusteth in him." Psalms 34:8
10. Another opportunity to tell others our story and to let them know what a mighty God we serve.

Thursday, January 27, 2011


I want to recall the T.V. program that my husband and I watched early Monday morning and pray that I can remember some of the small details that had such a huge impact on me.

It started off like this:
A man (I cannot remember his name but I am going to call him Tom) was about to begin a rafting trip down the Colorado River in the Grand Canyon.  At the beginning of the show a friend was with him, but it was apparent that he was only there to drop Tom off.  Tom was sitting in the raft chatting and saying goodbye to his friend.  The raft appeared to be well equipped with enough supplies to last several days, but the narrator let us know that Tom did not have a cell phone or any other means of communication with him.  As his friend walked away, Tom called him back to tell him to send help if he had not reached a certain point in four or five days.

Other than than the fact that he had no way to communicate with anyone in case of an emergency, Tom looked to be prepared for his journey.  There were several plastic containers neatly tied down in the raft that I assumed were filled with food, clothing, survival/camping equipment, tools,etc.  And although he covered the emergency part when he told his friend to send help if he had not reached a certain place on a certain day, it seemed to be an after thought.

And the story continued:
It was made known to us how much Tom was looking forward to this trip.  He looked forward to the solitude and peacefulness of his surroundings.  As he began rafting, he talked about how quite it was in the canyon and how this was something he had longed for.  We were also led to believe that Tom was familiar with the Colorado River, not necessarily because he had been on it before, but maybe because he had studied it.  He rowed down the river and managed through each rapid he encountered. However, the anticipation of one rapid in particular had him very anxious because he knew it would be the worst one on his route.  So, in preparation for it, he put his wet suit and life jacket on.  Seconds before, I told my husband that I could not believe he did not have a life jacket on so I was glad to see him do this.  

He reached the treacherous rapid and appeared for the most part to effortlessly go through it. It was obvious that he was proud of himself (not really in a smug sort of way, but he did seem very confident).  The scene went from him rowing through the rapid to successfully navigating out of it.  He was reclining back in his raft after having changed back into his khaki cargo shorts and a short sleeve shirt.  I think maybe he had sandals on but I am not sure. I had not paid attention to his clothes or shoes before he put the wet suit and life jacket on.

I do not know how much time lapsed, but at some point he began to realize that the rest of his trip was not going to be smooth sailing.  He appeared to be mad at himself for focusing so much on having gotten past the worst part and not remembering there were several more smaller rapids ahead of him.

As soon as he approached the next one, it was obvious he was going to be in trouble.  He lost control of the raft and landed on top of a boulder.  While trying to get off, he fell into the river and the raft capsized.  He managed to take hold of the raft and get it and himself onto a rocky shoreline.  He knew his only hope of turning the raft over was to retrieve some supplies that were still attached to the raft but now under water.  So for the second time he found himself back in the frigid Colorado River.  In complete darkness he was able to untie boxes and find what he needed. Despite the fact that he was extremely cold, he rigged a pulley device that would hoist the raft over and turn it upright.  His plan failed.  The ropes broke barely missing his head as they snapped.

Plan B: He spotted a sandy shoreline on the other side of the ravine and attempted to swim to it in hopes of finding shelter and getting warm.  It was getting late in the day.  This plan too failed.  The river slammed him back into the rocks and he lost the raft.  This time he made an attempt to climb up onto a grassy area above the rocks.  I do not know if sometimes during all of this he lost his shoes or if he never had any on, but at this particular time he was barefooted while trying to scale a rock wall.  He got so very close to the top when he fell backwards and landed back into the river.  This was his fourth time to be in the cold water.  During this fall he injured himself.

Once again he found himself  at the bottom of the rock wall only this time with an injured foot and several broken toes, as well as, a blow to his face that had knocked out several of his teeth.  But despite all of this he still managed to climb over the rock wall.  Keep in mind that he is extremely cold;  injured;  in a pair of shorts and a short sleeve shirt with no shoes and no supplies; no food; no way of communicating with anyone; and night time is fast approaching.    

To wrap this story up, here is a list of events that took place over the next 7 or 8 days:

1. He dug a hole in the dirt and covered it with dead branches for a place to sleep and get out of the wind.

2. He had a lighter in his pocket and was able to build a fire. He started out gathering wood for his fire close to where he camped, so as the days went on and he became weaker he was having to walk farther and farther away to gather wood.

3. The fire was never enough to keep him warm at night and there was little sun during the day.

4.  When the sun came out, he would follow it around even though the temperature was still cold.  (Remember he was in the Grand Canyon).

5. He got very little sleep.

6. He had no food.  He tried to catch a fish with his hands and then with a spear he made, but was unsuccessful.

7. After several days, an airplane flew over him.  He tried to wave it down, but they could not see him.

8. He spent countless hours gathering rocks from the river bed and making a gigantic X in the sand in hopes another plane would see it as a distress signal.

9. He had hallucinations and became very depressed.

10. He left messages for his friends and family after accepting the fact that he was going to die.

The End:  
Just before he lost all hope, rescue came. (I was falling back to sleep right as the rescue was taking place.  But, obviously Tom was given something to eat as soon as they got him into the helicopter.  I heard him say that was the best sandwich he had ever eaten in his life.)

In the blink of an eye, what started out as something pleasurable quickly turned into a fight to survive. Tom was confident when he got victory over what he thought was his biggest hurdle.  He let his guard down while in the calm water.  He did not anticipate having to fight for something so precious to him (his life), nor was he equipped to do so.  He was scared and soon became weary. He lost faith in his friend.  He lost hope.  But, just as he was about to give up, help came.



Wednesday, January 26, 2011


It has been a while since I have written a post, three months to be exact.  But it's not because God has not been ever present and working on me. Yesterday was the first day I felt led to record and share some of the things that have taken place over the last few months in my life.  I know it will take several posts for me to accomplish this, but I have to start somewhere... so here goes... 

I prayed on my way to work yesterday as I have many times before.  But on this particular morning, I thanked God for something I have never thanked Him for before.  Never before have I thanked Him for being my "Fixer", for fixing the things in my life that I have made a total and complete mess out of and also for fixing situations that have blind-sided me leaving me spinning out of control or dumbfounded.

Early Monday morning of this week, very early, sometimes between 2 and 3 am, it was NOT a coincidence that my husband and I both woke up at the same time. It was NOT a coincidence that the T.V. was on a different channel than the usual Food Network or TV Land (I almost always go to sleep with either of these channels playing) It was NOT a coincidence that a show was on based on true life events. It was NOT a coincidence that we both woke up at the beginning of the story and both fell back to sleep at the end.

I want to devote an entire post (hopefully I can get to it tomorrow) to explain what the show was about, why I believe God wanted us to see it, and the significance of it in our lives.

I Peter 5:8 says "Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:"

I believe that just as Satan poses himself as a roaring lion to terrorize or devour us, he also has poses himself as an angel of light to deceive us, as well as, a sneaky snake so that he can lure us into situations that could corrupt us morally and hurt others in the process.

The sneaky snake has been ever present in my household!  But he was not able to do damage that God was not able to fix!!  You know when we try to fix something that is broken it may never function the same again (a broken handle on a coffee cup when glued back on will never look the same or be as strong as it was before); however, when God fixes something it always turns out better than before, better than we could have ever imagined!

Beauty for ashes!  This is something that only "The Great Fixer" can accomplish.

Thank you again, God, for being my "Fixer".    


Friday, August 27, 2010


I have discovered a new television show. The name of it is "Hoarders".  I do not intentionally watch it, but if I happen to see it come on, I tend to want to stay glued to it for hours.  Not sure why, other than being intrigued with the fact that people can actually live with garbage piled up all around them, even to the point they cannot get into their own beds and sometimes into their own homes.  Some have gone so far as to move out and rent apartments.  Another reason I do not intentionally watch it is because it makes me want to go clean out closets!!  Not that that would be a bad thing.

Whatever the opposite of hoarding is... that would be me!

My son moved out a couple of weeks ago leaving for college.  As he packed and cleaned out his room, we talked about some of the things he use to have and play with and I almost felt guilty over the lack of childhood toys, memorabilia, etc. in there.  I just do not keep things!! Oh, I still have some of their baby items, a few toys they played with, and some of the cards and pictures they drew when they were little.  Their crib is in the attic awaiting a grandchild, but for the most part as they grew up and went from one hobby, sport, collection, or whatever, I "cleaned house" so to speak.

As a matter of fact, I am in the process of cleaning out some things today in preparation to have a yard sale next weekend.  Now that my son has moved, it is time for me to clean out some things left behind and freshen up some paint and a few other things in his room, as well as, in some of the other rooms in my house.      

I walked down my hallway one evening this week.  Both of the doors to their bedrooms were open.  And I could not help but to remember them as they use to be.  They have at one time or another housed not only furniture, but also two precious lives and all that was important to them at that particular time.    Beanie Babies, The Little Pet Shop, A Rabbit, A Bird, Yellow, Purple, Green, Blue, Beige, Gray, Floral Prints, Plaid, Baseball Equipment, Guitars, Fencing Equipment, Paint Ball Guns, Fishing Gear, Stuffed Animals, Story Time, Bedtime Prayers, The Latest Fashions, Legos, Video Games, Dinosaurs, Baby Dolls, Halloween Costumes, Makeup, School Books, Stereos.... 





Thursday, August 12, 2010



By the weekend it will have grown to an astronomical size. So large that my breathing will be restricted, and the flood gates will break loose, the tears will flow, and the weeping and sobbing will begin.


On Sunday night or sometimes on Monday, I will drive away from my son, leaving him four and a half hours away from me (at college). I will come home to a house where he no longer lives and to a room where he no longer sleeps.

I have not really taken care of him (so to speak) in a while. He is 20 years old. But I have been here for ALL of those 20 years to see that he had a place to live, a bed to sleep in, clean clothes to wear, money to spend, food to eat, gas in his truck, doctors to see and medicine to take when he is sick, encouraging words when he is down....

I am afraid I am about to find out that the "Empty Nest" has little to do with the house and all to do with the heart!

A new chapter in our lives. One that has come TOO soon!

I will update as soon as I can pull myself together.


Last week my nine year old niece spent the night with me and we were able to get in a little shopping time.  And of course found ourselves in my our favorite store, T.J.Maxx. While being checked out, the cashier made a comment about my niece's birthmark.  She told us that her daughter had one that was almost identical, but located in a different place. (My niece has birthmark on the upper park of her chest.  She wore a cute little yellow halter top that day, otherwise it is usually not visible.) I shared with her that is was "God's thumb print".  She expressed some admiration for this explanation, but it was not her expression that concerned me.  I looked at my niece to see if I could read any embarrassment on her face. After all, it wasn't as if two people who did not know each other were standing there discussing her birthmark or anything like that! But, thankfully there were no signs of embarrassment or anything else. 

We left the store and never brought it up again.

We met my daughter and one of her friends for lunch next door at Pizza Inn.  They both commented on how cute she looked in her bright yellow top and the big yellow bow in her hair to match. 

During ONE of my niece's trips to the buffet line (in all fairness she was for the most part "sent" there), my daughter's friend asked me if she was ever self-conscious about her birthmark.  Without hesitation, my answer was no.  I explained to them about our encounter in T.J. Maxx and shared with her the "thumb print" story:  It was something her mom told her when she was very small and she accepted it immediately and always has.  End of Story! 

A few days later, something began to weigh on my mind.  How many blemishes do the rest of us have?  How many of these blemishes do we try to hide or cover up from others?  Sometimes we do a great job at it too.  It would be easy for my niece to keep her birthmark concealed from others, except those close to her.  Isn't it that way for us too?

I had a long telephone conversation this past week with a friend who has a lot of hurt in her life.  She has a son who has caused her and her husband much grief.  She made a statement to me: "It is time."  Time for what?  She went on to tell me that she had just turned 60 and for too many years carried around baggage filled with grief, guilt, shame, embarrassment, and so much more.  It was time to let go.  ( Not to be mistaken with time to stop loving or praying.  This never stops).  But it was time to let go of the shame and embarrassment.  Time to open up to others.  Time to allow God and others to help her work through her grief and guilt.  Time to share.  Time to allow Him to restore the joy in her life.  Time to live again. 

Unfortunately, I could relate to all she said.

This journey with my daughter has carried me to places that I would never have chosen to go, but to places where I have seen God's face many times.  Had it not been for this journey, I would have quite possibly never experienced those life changing encounters with Him.  No, this journey has been a blemish in my life.  One that has forever changed me and my relationship with God.  His hand has been on me through every step of way.  His hand has been on my daughter's life.  His hand has shaped and molded me into who I have become through it all.  And if He has thumb prints, then my life has unmistakably been imprinted with them.       

And I will use my nine year old niece as my example: To not be embarrassed. Never be ashamed.  But will  go forth and boldly and proudly display God's Thumb Print!

Saturday, August 7, 2010


I will never take for granted or be ungrateful over the fact that my children respect me.  There are many reason I know this to be true, but I am not going to go into them on this particular post.  I am feeling awfully proud today because they desire to share "things" with me.  I will never take for granted that God gives me a glimpse into their lives (the parts that I never see) so that I know how to pray for them and how to council them.

This morning hearts were spilled out (as well as tears) all over my living room.  I spilled my heart.  He spilled his.  And all I can say is that it was not the "Good".  It was the "Bad and the Ugly".

And after all was said and done I have never been more proud of my son in my life! Ever!