From a Fork to a Juicer

I’m pretty good and keeping up with my journalling and daily time with God… note, pretty good – not perfect… from time to time I’m angry with God (which is NOT a sin) and I don’t want to do my devotions – just to punish Him! Yeah – I know… it only punishes me…

With mental health, there are times that I do my devotions, and even as I write this post, that the deeper understanding – the deeper thinking – of grasping of…… (arrghhh – ok – I’m stuck again – but hopefully you can grasp my point)…

Even when I take time to slow down… to be still and know that He is God… take time to renounce Satan from being around me – it’s like my thoughts can’t connect… sometimes they seem like they are being scrambled like eggs with a fork… sometimes like a protein shake in a blender… or veggies being chopped up in a food processer… and then there is the juicer… rammed in and all the pulp is separated and whatever left is liquified… aaarrrggghhhhhh #2 can’t piece together the rest of the thought… but again – I’m sure most readers should be able to get my point…

It’s really easy to get discouraged… easy to have my scrambled thoughts amplifying in my mind, drowning out anything else… and mental health is a real problem for many people… a pastor’s wife I knew walked out of her house one day… they found her body a few months later… she loved God… she was a valued member of society… a dedicated Christian…

Sometimes I have to guard my own mind as it too wants to go for a long walk.. (but I am safe!)… long walks are thoughts – not plans… but why is this still happening?

Is it because of a lack of faith? Maybe to some degree… or is it no different than someone battling cancer???? Do they have a lack of faith?

Often it “just is”…

Either way – I will keep praying – and using Bible verses that I have in my Bible First Aid Kit…

Spending time with God is NEVER wasted time… God doesn’t owe me anything… He has already covered me with grace…

As I continue my battle… I will listen to Christian music… I will do what I know has helped… and even if I can’t figure out anything deeper than that God loves me, that He has a plan for me… that I have a purpose… that the simple faith of a child is all I need… I will do my best to stick to that…

Jesus said we need to have the faith of a child… Maybe I need to be more literal…

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Joy Joy Joy Down in My Heart

I’VE GOT JOY, JOY, JOY, JOY DOWN IN MY HEART

I’ve got the joy, joy, joy, joy
Down in my heart (where?)
Down in my heart (where?)
Down in my heart
I’ve got the joy, joy, joy, joy
Down in my heart (where?)
Down in my heart to stay

Chorus: And I’m so happy oh, so very ha-happy. I have the love of Jesus in my heart (Down in my heart). And I’m so happy, so very happy.

I’ve got the love of Jesus, love of Jesus
Down in my heart (where?)
Down in my heart (where?)
Down in my heart
I’ve got the love of Jesus, love of Jesus
Down in my heart (where?)
Down in my heart to stay

I’ve got the peace that passes understanding
Down in my heart (where?)
Down in my heart (where?)
Down in my heart
I’ve got the peace that passes understanding
Down in my heart (where?)
Down in my heart to stay

I’ve got the wonderful love of my blessed Redeemer
Way down in the depths of my heart (where?)
Down in the depths of my heart (where?)
Down in the depths of my heart
I’ve got the wonderful love of my blessed Redeemer
Way down in the depths of my heart (where?)
Down in the depths of my heart to stay

(Old Sunday school song I remember)

It’s true, some of the things we have learned sink with us deep down… To me the opposite of depression is joy… Philippians 4: 4-7 talks about rejoicing… But how do you go from depression to joy? By reusing the joy you already have stored up… Thinking and deliberately remember joyous times with God… Truths about who God is… And just as importantly truth about who you are in Christ…

It’s the mental game that’s hardest with mental health… It’s not easy but it’s possible to train our minds…

Lately, I’ve been re-reading Joyce Meyer’s book The Battlefield of the Mind: Winning the Battle of Your Mind… If you haven’t read it, get a hold of a copy (eBay used $4)… The book is rich with scripture verses that specifically target our mind and remind us that we have the mind of Christ… Given to us upon salvation (not sure if you are saved? See the bottom of this post)…

I’ve set up on my phone several reminders throughout the day to check the state of my mind… Am I remaining in a positive mind? If I find that I haven’t I make the mental choice to make changes… Why am I not? Stressed out about something? What’s the reason behind allowing the stress… Yes… ALLOWING the stress…

Is there something I need to do different? Have I put something off? Have I forgotten the truths: Phil 4: 13 For I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength or 2 Cor 2:16 For who has understood the mind of the Lord so as to instruct him?” But we have the mind of Christ.and with His help I can find my way out of stress?

Am I upset about something? Something I did? If I made a wrong choice then I need to repent AND not beat myself up over it… Romans 8:1 Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ JesusOnce something is forgiven it’s done with… Satan loves to make us squirm over past wrongs…

So is it as easy as switching on a lightbulb? Ahhh… No… It’s a long process… But something that does get a bit easier each day…

Tuesday I had issue after issue coming up… Things out of my control… A computer program messed up my data, even my backup… which has resulted in hours of work being needed… Other things were also not going as planned and I also found myself berating myself over mistakes… Frankly, it was a really lousy morning but I realized that and when I did I made choices to get out of that funk… I cried out to God asking him for help to remain using the mind of Christ… My old habits of beating myself up are strong, but not as strong as last week and less strong than the week before… I had to slow down, stop and realize what my thoughts were… They were negative and the “desire” to remain in pity mode was there as was the temptation to just give in and “remain as is”…

My thoughts went from… Well, isn’t this just great, seems about right usually the loss of data is something that would happen only to me!

And changed to: Ok… That didn’t go as planned, but I know I need to deal with it and I’m going to pray the God will help me figure out how to redo what was lost. Maybe there was something in the data that was wrong and could have been costly… I’m going to believe God’s word Romans 8:28 And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose... Somehow God will work everything out and it will be just fine… Phil 4:19 And my God will liberally supply (fill until full) your every need according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus.

These are truths, not lies of the devil, and I need to believe these truths and live out my life with them and that includes keeping in the mind of Christ…

Then, throughout the rest of the day I checked in with myself to see how my thinking was and made corrections… I can recall positive past outcomes with God for reassurance… That’s the reason for the Joy, Joy, Joy Down in My Heart…

Salvation: it’s a once-in-a-lifetime decision… it’s accepting Jesus into Your heart… More detailed information and an example of the sinner’s prayer can be found here

If today is the day you made this decision, congratulations and welcome to the forever family… Don’t keep it as a secret to yourself… Tell somebody! Then find a good church to plug into…

Not sure where to find one? Check out any churches in your area that run a Celebrate Recovery and also think about attending their program… You’ll find the love and support you need…

For the Love of a Dog

We, like many others, have a very lovable dog… she has been a great companion as I deal with mental health issues…

And, yesterday, she needed surgery on her leg… last night she was in so much pain that we took her back to the vet and she stayed overnight… (she’s home and doing much better now)…

But until we dropped her off again she was whimpering non-stop… and she isn’t a whiner… But it was SOOO HARD to listen to… Holding her to try to make her as comfortable as possible… Feeling powerless…

It got me thinking about how hard it must be for God to listen to us “whimpering” away when He is the ultimate source of comfort and He desires to be taking us under the shadow of His wings...

I didn’t even consider God for a LONG time…

With mental health, it’s so easy to be caught in the downward spiral and what starts as a whimper can turn into something… and our self-talk is often so negative… mine got to the point I didn’t even consider God for a LONG time… I was convinced that my family would be SOOO much better off without me…

Of course, God is always at the ready… He hears our whimpers and more than understand our pain… after all, He was truly and utterly abandoned in the garden before His arrest and eventual crucifixion… He was in so much distress He sweated blood…

He understands and is always ready for us – we just have to turn around…

When 3 Becomes 5

With my last blog posting I mentioned my miracle and how I suddenly have no vertigo and balance is really not an issue anymore, except that my muscles have to get used to not being an issue 🙂

The lady that prayed for me told me to expect continued healing and that has been the case!

I still have more energy… Sleeping less and overall I feel the best I have in at least 10 years!!

Sometimes healing is slower and not always instant…

A lot of this, really goes back to an event that happened in February… We have an Art Life program at our church… We gather once a month and together have a theme and do whatever art we choose/feel lead to fo whether it be drawing, painting, reading poetry or anything else…

I hadn’t attended in quite some time, especially because my meds were not working as they needed to be… But when I went in February I had not one or two but three times – no, make that 4 times people sought me out and prayed for me…

The first was simply saying that God has noted my struggles and also my faithfulness… it came in the way of written words, something I will treasure…

Second was a lady who spoke to the group showing a drawn piece of art… That she had been working on for a while… She had written some on the back and said that now she understood God wanted to give it to someone specific… Me… Another treasure…

The next was prayer… A special guest asked if anyone wanted prayer… I was on a roll and I didn’t want it to end!

Her prayer over me was  encouraging to keep going as I was and forecast good events in the distance… that my art could become something more than just personal…

The 4th… no wait… the 5th, nope still the 4th… was immediately after the third and she said that while I was being prayed for by the other lady, she had a vision in which she saw me shaking off snow and breaking free of what has held me down…

Needless to say – I was  beyond buzzed… At this point…

The last one was “to let go of holding in my creative self” with child like abandonment… This was from a man, who I had never been introduced to

Back then, it was hard to tell my stick dog from my stick horse…

So, with child like faith, I started to work on my art skills… I’m no Picasso (who really understands his art) Rembrandt…  but I’m working on it… Drawing, painting and Bible journaling (which I absolutely love doing!!!!)…

AND a few days ago I was really missing my music side of creativity… I bought a used keyboard yesterday and I’m SOOOOO loving it! For the price I paid… It’s more than what hoped for…

So I will end my babbling on… I had honestly only remembered 3 things from Feb… And now that 3 has become 5…

Vertigo You Gotta Go!

May 2, 1997 was a night that changed my life and the lives of my family… I was in an accident which resulted in a fractured skull, a brain injury and VERTIGO…

If you’ve never had vertigo feel blessed! For those that have you know it is a nasty thing to deal with… It drastically effects your balance…

Over the years I learned how to move and not move my head to invoke vertigo…

When my first grandchild was announced, I spent time in physio to help regain my balance and be able to chase after the grandkids – determined to not just be the rocking chair and stories grandma… It took a lot of work but I re-taught my brain how to balance better…

Fact: Balance is based on 3 things… Ears, eyes and the top of your spine…

My ears caused vertigo so they didn’t help… My neck has arthritis and didn’t really help (so I was told at physio)… That left my eyes… (And my feet also could detect “flat” surfaces to help, thanks to physio)…

Fast forward to 2 weeks ago… And I was at a church bonfire get together… It was all great UNTIL sun was down… We were out in the country… No street lights, no real light pollution, except the bonfire… And it was in a field… A bumpy field…

I was literally fighting really hard not to have a nasty fall… Wobbling like a Webble when a lady, who I had only briefly met, noticed me desperately stumbling… She offered to pray for me…

Now, when I had my accident I perforated my left eardrum… So my hearing on my left was less than ideal…

As she prayed my left ear started hearing TOTALLY different than my right ear… When we speak or listen our ears detect the vibrations… It was as if she was praying inside my left ear! About 100 times louder…

When she finished I could hear better with my left ear than my right ear! And the vertigo is completely gone!! I can move my head in any direction and no vertigo spell is triggered!!!!!!!!!

After 22 years, I could stand and walk on a bumpy field as if nothing was ever wrong!

The next time I see my doctor I plan to have him look into my ear and confirm what I already know… It’s perfect!

So does God still perform miracles? Of course… God is the same today, yesterday and forever

God Uses a Pouch

If you have ever seen the movie Hook, based on the story of Peter Pan, there is the wonky uncle who keeps looking for his bag of marbles… At the end of the movie, he finds his bag… They had been left at Neverland years before when he was a lost boy …

The Bible refers to treasures a few times… Mary had her treasure…

Luke 2:19 (NIV): But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart.

But with regards to mental health I found and like this gem:

1 Samuel 25:29 (NLT): “Even when you are chased by those who seek to kill you, your life is safe in the care of the Lord your God, secure in his TREASURE POUCH!

With all the events surrounding the birth of Christ, Mary tucked everything she could so she could be able to close her eyes and relive those moments… As a mother, I have treasured memories hidden inside my heart of events of my children…

What can be hard about mental health is we devalue ourselves…

I don’t know about you but sometimes my choices, even daily choices, are based on the value I see in myself…

It’s easy to see the value of others but we sure can be hard on ourselves…

And I hide some of the tough days because I don’t want others to think of me as “that lady”… The screw up… The nut job…

Even with family, who I know all love me, at times I worry about embarrass them…

The “cure” for self devaluing is spending time with God… Seeing how He sees us…

God uses a pouch…

One two three WOW!

It’s been a couple of interesting weeks…

2. Twenty two years ago I was in an accident and not only fractured my skull but also damaged my inner ear… Looking up and left would trigger 99% of the time…

1. I’m dealing with a med change… For the better actually! I haven’t had this much energy in at least 10 years!

2. I have dealt with vertigo for over 20 years after an accident damaged my inner ear… I could pretty much guarantee but every time I looked up and left – I would trigger it and end up dizzy…

I was healed… I can’t trigger any vertigo! And now my left ear hears better than my right ear!!People around me were talking in little groups… I went up to a few and listened with both ears to test the truth… I’ve always sat to the left of people to have a better chance… No longer an issue!!!

While at a church event I ended up really REALLY staggering while outside and around a bon fire… Two ladies prayed and one clasped her hands over both ears… About 2 seconds in I suddenly hear way different with my damaged left ear…

A new church campus is opening up in a few months and my desire to get involved was way bigger than my body would allow… Now with my vertigo gone… With the med change giving me energy, to get involved, God has fulfilled some of my heart’s desires!

I’m guessing some people might think I’m just “one of those” type of Christians… BUT we all know God can heal… So why is it hard to when one does?!?!?

3. We have a must do project to do on our house, but we don’t want to go into debt to get it done dot-dot-dot I made a phone call that I had been meaning to do… God literally put the papers I needed in my hand while clearing up some wayward papers… I made the phone call and 100% unexpected it turns out that we will now have the money we require! God is good… All the time! All the time, God is good!!!!!

(read this about 5 minutes after posting)

Releasing Impossibilities

by Charles R. Swindoll

Read Matthew 6:25-34

When you face an impossibility, leave it in the hands of the Specialist! Refuse to calculate. Refuse to doubt. Refuse to work it out by yourself. Refuse to worry or encourage others to worry. Stand against that.

Instead, say, “Lord, I’m carrying around something I cannot handle. Because You are not only able but also willing, take this off my hands. It’s impossible to me, but is as nothing with You.” Persevering through the pressures of impossibilities calls for that kind of confidence.

Now, our problem is that we hold on to our problems. If your Swiss watch stops working, you don’t sit down at home with a screwdriver and start working on it yourself. You take it to a specialist.

The problem is that the Lord gets all the leftovers after we try to fix things ourselves. We make all the mistakes and get things tied into granny knots, then dump it in His lap and say, “Here, Lord.”

No! Right at first, say, “It’s impossible; I can’t handle it, Lord. Before I foul it up, it’s Yours.” He is able to handle it. But we don’t usually give God those chances to “fix” it. We are so totally (and sinfully) confident in ourselves that we don’t give God the chance to do what He is a real Specialist at doing.

If something is humanly impossible, then what in the world are we doing trying to pull it off?

Excerpted from Day by Day with Charles Swindoll, Copyright © 2000 by Charles R. Swindoll, Inc. (Thomas Nelson Publishers). All rights reserved worldwide. Used by permission.

From 1% Failure to 100% Success

Oh, those days when life seems hopeless… When mental health issues are kicking my butt…

I don’t know about you… But I have times I feel like I am worthless, frustrated… That my life seems to be useless… and to some it might seem like a “pity party” but it really isn’t pity… It’s something more insidious… How we perceive ourselves…

If you think you aren’t worthy just compare yourself to:

David… A bad parent… A murder… A person who dealt with lust… BUT YET God calls him “the man after God’s heart 💓

Abraham… He is caught for 2 big lies that affected other people big time… His faith can be called into question when he slept with another woman – because God hadn’t filled His promise…

Aaron, brother to Moses… His brother goes awry for a few days and he not only caves his faith in God… He CREATED his own physical God! This is the man who was present and involved in the plagues in Egypt…

Keep your faith, make sure you keep up on any medications prescribed (we still have a brain chemical imbalance)…

Cain… Bad attitude, oh and a murderer! God didn’t zap him away from earth…

God created us for a reason… and therefore we are only to check out on His timeline… Of that I’m 100% sure…

Reach out when you need it most…

God’s Backup Plan

Depression, anxiety… Any of the “personality”disorder can run rampant in our lives…

At the worst – of it just reaching out to God can seem impossible… When words can’t express how we feel… The emotions are bouncing around and any chance at “sane” thoughts are too scrambled…

But God has a built in backup system…

Romans 8:26–27 (NLT): And the Holy Spirit helps us in our weakness. For example, we don’t know what God wants us to pray for.

BUT THE HOLY SPIRIT prays for us with groanings that cannot be expressed in words…

And the Father who knows all hearts knows what the Spirit is saying, for the Spirit pleads for us believers in harmony with God’s own will…

When Jesus was in the garden, on the night he was betrayed and all alone…

Luke 22:43–44 (LEB): And an angel from heaven appeared to him, strengthening him. And being in anguish, he began praying more fervently and his sweat became like drops of blood falling down to the ground

Yup… Jesus gets it… He understands agony… He totally gets what we experience…

And from that He’s able to help guide us through our hard times…

Ice Tea and Refuge

Nestea had a series of commercials quite a number of years ago… people who drank their iced tea felt like they were falling into a pool… The Nestea plunge

Often, with mental health and anxiety, life can seem overwhelming… Those times where you just need to shut down… A place of refuge…

Isaiah 25:4–5 (NLT): But you are a tower of refuge to the poor, O Lord, a tower of refuge to the needy in distress.
You are a refuge from the storm
and a shelter from the heat.
For the oppressive acts of ruthless people are like a storm beating against a wall, or like the relentless heat of the desert.

God provides for our refuge… A place to be safe, feel safe… Where we can ease our distress… Our fears… Where oppression doesn’t rule…It is both simple and complex… At times with words running through our brains it seems next to impossible to control… Shutting down is an option I’ve used both with God and other times I’ve just shut down…

Anything with God is obviously better… listening to Christian music… Finding verses from the Bible that calm us… Praying to God… Sending out a text to someone you know who will pray for you… all of these are available… The complexity is in putting it all into action… seeking the help, realizing it’s what we need…

The simple is… take the plunge with God…

PS Remember that while Satan can create thoughts, he can’t hear them… As a friend said “don’t leave those thoughts staying rent free… verbally tell Satan to go to hell… He does hear our voices…

Grumpy, Great, Grabbing and Canucks

I had one child who, as a toddler, did not always wake up in the best mood, (can we say grumpy) instead they needed to have some cereal and then their day was great… they needed sustenance to start a great day…

Psalms 92:2–3 (NLT):  It is good to proclaim your unfailing love in the morning, your faithfulness in the evening, accompanied by a ten-stringed instrument, a harp,
and the melody of a lyre…


Today we have Spotify, YouTube, and Google Play Music of ways to connect with God in musical praise and worship…

With mental health each day can have its own challenges… sometimes just getting out of bed is a monumental task… planning to start my morning with God can help to set the tone for the rest of the day…

Psalm 92 tells of acknowledging God… to think of the good aspects of my life – of God – of His unfailing love… think of it as a personal Spiritual hug… on the tougher days just remembering to connect with God can be hard… the whole pray without ceasing… but if it becomes a habit – something I do every day – it makes me focus on what God has done in the past with and for me… and then at night – it’s time to check in with God and review the day… see what God has orchestrated for me throughout the day… the music aspect… well I have found that when I listen to Christian music or I’m just been more focused on God that I “catch” myself with a song running through my mind… Recently at church we sang about – Jesus we love You, Oh how we love You…

That day and today I had those words filling my mind instead of some of the negative “mental health” battle words… and then, at the end of my day… I had instruments playing a melody…

So finding – wait – FINDING??

No – Reserving – planning – demanding of myself to find MAKING quality time with God is a BIG reason where I am with my recovery… The more “militant” I am about it – the better I am off… it’s way too easy to make a devotion bargain with God… “So God – the Canucks are playing tonight – in about 20 min… so I figure I can get my reading done easy enough – but my prayers will be a Reader’s Digest version instead ok? I’ll try to do better tomorrow”

While feeling the NEED to do devotions should never be because of conviction (there is no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus), it should be desired… it should be a high priority – and planned ahead… 

One thought I have had running through my mind lately is – if Jesus were to walk into the room would I want to change the channel – or suddenly grabbing my Bible – or change radio stations??

I’m not saying it’s all radio/TV/books are bad… something you need to balance out in your life with God… if I have had a great devotion time then having Jesus sit down and cheer for the Canucks with me would be awesome…  

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