Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Bouncing Back After A Fall

Philippians 4:13 (NKJV) “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” 

Bouncing Back After A Fall

As much as I hear other people whine and complain about politics, life, bills, and setbacks, my biggest complaint this year is SNOW! Never in my wildest dreams would I have thought I’d be complaining about too much snow, but here it is upon me now!

After this Sunday’s high of sixty splendiferous degrees, Monday was crash and burn let out the snowfall! Snow it did, all day! It never amounted to much but we finally had a week of a thaw that melted snow from as far back as Christmas, I was never so happy to see the resurfacing of the brown palette.

Monday, the white returned to the ground. Granted it was beautiful, granted it snowed the entire day but produced nary an inch but it was back, causing traveling headaches. The white was back on the ground, the bitter cold kicked into overdrive and we’re back to fluffy socks and big sweaters. For a couple of days, we enjoyed long sleeves but no need for a sweatshirt, scarf and gloves, and those were days topping out in the thirties. It’s not that I’m whining about cold and winter, my gripe is in the extended duration of deep cold spells. Yup, winter is like that! I KNOW!

While the negativity I feel with each snowfall now tries to tear me down, I am clearly in a bouncing back mode and am letting nothing beat me up! Scientifically, “crying is one way that the body removes stress chemicals,” from The Truth About Cancer. Sunday was a crying day and I do allow myself days of downtime because this upbeat, peppy all the time, no pain and just soaring gets to be a tiring chore like the shoveling of snow, instead of an accepted way of life.

I bet some of you are saying ‘you could’ve just went the chemo route and you’d already be in remission.’ You don’t understand this disease any more than I do. As a matter of fact, you and I don’t know any more about this illness than the big bad doctor. He’s just doing what they’ve continued to do for thirty and forty years. Times have changed. There are new ways of beating this Big C but the studies take too long and the doctor doesn’t wish to embrace these new ways so, in the meantime, people die all because of tradition. Their pockets are amply lined with money from insurance and the pharmaceutical companies and people are going out to pasture!

My body speaks to me and God speaks to me. John 10:27 says, "My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me.” For ME, the choice was simple, to follow that still small voice and go where He leads me. Here lately my body is telling me that something isn’t working and it kind of threw me off because I was having good, productive, pain-free days. Slowly the pain was sliding back into my legs and my back, walking was pained, muscles strained and with the winter's lack of sunshine and outside activity (besides shoveling snow), I was feeling a bit discouraged, what was wrong? It had to be something in my diet that I had changed.

You see, when you’re on such a strict protocol of food that you eat, the food then tells you what is wrong, like the recent frozen processed pizza I had. No, it wasn’t just that one pizza, it had to be something else. The only thing I could think of is wheat bread or organic oatmeal. I’m leaning more towards the cause being the WHEAT

I started allowing wheat bread into my diet around January first because I listened to other BC women who said that wheat wasn’t bad for our diets, go figure. I give up bread for a year and soar, let wheat bread in and crash. Really it is a no-brainer to figure that one out. 

Matt. 11:16 “But whereunto shall I liken this generation? It is like unto children sitting in the markets, and calling unto their fellows,”

I hear the term ‘sheeple’ in the political arena often and since I’m not into politics and don’t allow that negativity in, I assume it is a derogatory remark of ‘stupid people’ following along after every wind that blows. (Please, there is no need to elaborate for me, thank you.) I conclude this summation because sheep have no survival skills like other animals, no way of fending for themselves; set them in the wild and they will be slaughtered because they need a shepherd to guide them. I think on a religious term sheeple can be the people following Christ the Shepherd, we seem dumb because we’re following along after a non-living entity (to others) and the zombie effect has a hold on us.

I only feel dumbed-down when listening to man and anything HE (or she) has to offer me in way of the ‘direction’ I should go. I listened to the BC group of women because they are going through the exact same thing I am going through with the Natural Protocol route and thought for a brief moment that maybe they knew what they were talking about. Granted they have a lot of knowledge on the subject but I’ll say this again, what works for one does not work for all.

Deut. 8:8 “A land of wheat, and barley, and vines, and fig trees, and pomegranates; a land of oil olive, and honey;”

At one time, the wheat, barley, and figs were of purity, not tainted by man. Man dusts these grains with chemicals, modifies them for the almighty dollar, making people sick in the process.

Through those links I shared, can you see what I’m up against? I’m up against man and his destruction of man! Maybe at one time wheat wasn’t such a bad grain, but with the rise of organic everything, there is more to the story that ‘man’ isn’t telling you. It’s okay, you have a doctor with his prescribed candy to make you feel better. I think the term ‘sheeple’ should stand for man following man, period! To ME, that is EXACTLY what it means. The main thing that makes me ‘different’ is I follow the One and the only living God. As soon as I listen to a man (or woman) I fall, crash and burn. Interesting.

Back to my strict protocol thank you very much. Run along now, Billy is running up the hill after Bobby, and Janie isn’t far behind with Tommy in tow seeking the candy that Timmy is offering.

Jer. 12:13 “They have sown wheat, but shall reap thorns: they have put themselves to pain, but shall not profit: and they shall be ashamed of your revenues because of the fierce anger of the LORD.”

Luke 6:49 “But he that heareth, and doeth not, is like a man that without a foundation built an house upon the earth; against which the stream did beat vehemently, and immediately it fell; and the ruin of that house was great.”

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

What They Don't Say

Job 8:14 “Whose hope shall be cut off, and whose trust shall be a spider's web.”

What They Don’t Say

Did you know that arthritis, multiple sclerosis, Hashimoto's diseases and more are all auto-immune diseases? Not much unlike cancer, these diseases most of the time can all be safely treated without drugs but that is not what your doctor says. What they do say is here’s a drug and it is the only way to find relief from continuous pain. What they don’t say is that changing your diet and exercise has a profound effect on your longevity with a pain-free existence. They steal your hope.

I’ve said over and over again to change your diet, relieve your pain and illness and over and over again I hear people not having any success because they don’t have the willpower to save themselves, they’d much rather think a drug can do all the work for them.

Why is there a war on health? Why have doctors made healthy eating a back-burner portion of your visit? Why don’t they hold knowledge of what actually heals a person instead of basically killing people with drugs? Had doctors been taught this information to begin with many of our parents, grandparents, children, and grandchildren would not have died. I hear all too often that a doctor saved a life because the drug kept momma stable, alive for a few more years. Baloney!

Maybe drugs are a necessity, maybe they can help, but does the doctor offer you the change in diet FIRST as a level of defense to fight what ails you? If he told you that you had to give up dairy, meat, or caffeine would you take a drug over changing? I believe you would. We live in a self-satisfying world addicted to sugar, oils, meat, fat, and drugs.

I believe when I gave up alcohol all those years ago, on my own, without a twelve step program that was, to me, proof that I had the willpower to fight anything that was thrown at me. Granted, that this wretched disease is a little bigger than an alcohol addiction.

It pains me to see friends sick on a daily basis. Every day it seems I’m bombarded with news of people with the flu, stomach virus’, colds and everything in between. I have to stay away from the social arena for days because of the negative invasion of illnesses and the unhealthy eating habits and no one willing to change. Stay in bed, pop some pills, go to the doctor, remain sick for days or weeks. Change? That’s not an option, they’d rather whine and pop pills, it’s a safer route than change.

I often think of how far I’ve come and how tempted I am when around people who are living it up in the toxin-filled world. It’s not easy choosing vegetables over a cheese-smothered pizza, it would be so easy to choose a Pepsi over a glass of water, a chip over a grape, the list goes on and on. It’s not easy staying alert and watching every single thing that goes in my mouth. A crash is basically inevitable as long as I allow the negative influx of my surroundings to have an impact.

This calls to mind the disciples when Jesus went to pray, were asked to sit and watch, each time Jesus returned they were asleep. Each time I tell someone to help them change their diet and keep sickness at bay, they eat and eat and eat everything that is making them sick to begin with. It’s as if they’ve fallen asleep and my words fall on deaf ear. They don’t have time to change, they can’t or won’t change or it’s just too hard to change. If they’re going to die, they’re going to die happy and unhealthy. You can’t take a healthy body with you, right?

After reading yesterday’s post, you see I hit a roadblock. I’m as human as everyone else and I fall too. I only had a pizza, and it would’ve been very easy for me to cave in and drink a Pepsi, or guzzle some alcohol. I chose the lesser of two evils and had pizza. It’s bound to happen but I was not ready for the emotional roller coaster that came before the crash.

My mind plays tricks on me as I imagine each and every one of you fight with before indulging in something you know isn’t good for you but you do it anyway as a form of comfort. I needed comfort from my toying thoughts. As time passes by I wonder about things. I guess it’s normal since I’ve chosen this path without the medical field supporting me. But rest assured, I wonder.

So I hit a speed bump in my journey. Nothing new there, we’re all bound to come across one or two when fighting addictions, diet change, or on a health-filled journey. I need to brush myself off and get back in the saddle again and ride onto victory. It can be done and won.

I rode my stationary bike like there was no tomorrow and I went on a journey of riding down a sun-laden country road with blooming trees and a melody keeping me focused. It felt great to get away and when I looked out the window and saw more intense snowfall and shivering temps in the teens, I kept peddling. My bike ride took me away from the negative world into a wonder-filled palace that I’ll be visiting quite a few times until I get myself out of this funk.

The winter in life is almost over and spring is just around the corner. A time to shed clothes and peel away layers of inhibitions and be proud of making it through the dormant season into the blossoming Springtime of life! I haven’t made it yet but just a few more weeks and I’ll be well on my way to victory. Are you going to say the same thing? Are you at least trying to change?

What they don’t say is that there is HOPE for some change! If your doctor or your path isn’t brimming with hope and possibilities, it’s time to find a path that will lead to success. If lil old me can do it, I do have hope that you can too! 

Job 6:11 “What is my strength, that I should hope? and what is mine end, that I should prolong my life?”

Monday, February 19, 2018

Still Small Voice

1 Kgs. 19:12 “And after the earthquake a fire; but the LORD was not in the fire: and after the fire a still small voice.”

Still small voice

Listen, can you hear Him, His still small voice is speaking to you, can you feel him? Maybe you hear an inner voice, maybe He’s revealed in dreams or visions. One way or another God is reaching out to you, can you give Him a moment of your time?

I need to heed my own advice. Yesterday was a pretty bad day, like a pimple everything in me burst; not physically, emotionally. When Lent begins and you alter your routine that you were so set on, you’d be surprised how quickly the Lord responds. 

I’ve said that I’m on a strict protocol but sometimes I don’t feel it is strict enough, I’m not fighting off the common cold mind you. I’ve given up so much that the task of continuing can be quite daunting and overwhelming. This week has been one of those weeks of build-up that came to a head and popped.

For starters, the weather. While everyone is out there laughing at me when I say how cold it is, they are not the ones hindered or put out by the unending cold. They're also not fighting a deathly disease. Let me remind you that last winter we had nary a speck of snow, we had one cold spell that was completely over in two weeks and on this day last year we were hitting record warmth and trees were already showing signs of budding.

Granted I know it is ‘winter’ from December 21-March 21 but for a couple of years, the winters have been mild and bearable. This one is strangely different. I say strangely because with a very dry summer we normally would have a dry winter, but this year when droughts were rampant across the country, after the wildfires in the west, something happened up there in the jet stream that changed weather across the states. 

Since December 21st, we’ve had snow or ice on the ground not allowing me my daily walks. The temperatures have been below normal meaning I’ve seen more minus zero wind chills than days above zero, or even above the freezing temp of 32. With the cold comes clouds, more clouds than sun. With ice, clouds and cold it has swept me into hibernation and that is not an allowed protocol of a vicious disease that lets me know who’s boss on any given day.

With the viciousness of the attack of this illness, I get very down, another part of the protocol that is not allowed. I know from the outside world you can’t see it, so of course, you’re going to laugh and not think of how your simple words might cut me like a knife. I do understand that life is going on for everyone else while mine has come to a complete standstill and turned around for me 360 degrees.

Yesterday I cried, a deep cry where my eyes puffed up, my nose clogged beyond decompression, my head ached and my whole body shivered and shook wanting to curl into a ball and be left alone. I told my husband I didn’t know what was happening or why I was crying like this. I just feel like I’m getting worse, not better, I’m not strong but am becoming weakened. I feel like Jesus went to pray and came back and here I am sleeping. He wanted me awake and I couldn’t do that one simple thing for Him, stay awake!

My husband told me that I used to cry like this a lot in the beginning and that I’ve been doing great. I sure don’t feel like I’ve been doing great but he assured me I was. Even with his assurance and compassion, I felt like sleeping, never to wake up again. I prayed.

Yesterday, tucked in among the frigid gloomy days was a sixty-degree day. The winds were horrendous, kind of ruining the beauty but after my cry, my dog needed to do some business and my hubby was in the shed working on a project. I rose and went to the back door, letting the dog outside, I looked around; the winds subsided. For a brief moment, I felt the sun, I drank in the warmth of my swollen face and felt a peace wash over me. God was letting me know, in His still small voice that I was going to be okay. 

Yesterday I craved everything that I haven’t had for a year. Yes, I know I can crash but I craved like never before. While shopping, I wanted donuts, I wanted pizza, I wanted everything but knew I could have nothing. I grieved beyond consolation, when I got home I crashed into a fit of tears that hurt every part of my being and there was this day, possibly the Son shining just for me, letting me know that I need to see how far I’ve come.

Luke 4:2 “Being forty days tempted of the devil. And in those days he did eat nothing: and when they were ended, he afterward hungered.”

I was reminded that when Jesus fasted, for forty days He was tempted by the devil, He didn’t cave but instead said, “Satan, get thee behind me.” I’m letting you know quite bluntly, I’m not Jesus and sometimes am not that strong.  

Luke 4:8 “And Jesus answered and said unto him, Get thee behind me, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve.”

I caved and ate a small frozen pizza. Not just any frozen pizza, I added black olives, onion, jalapeno peppers, ham, and some turkey bacon; the pizza was a feast I haven’t seen for a year! I had two slices of bread with butter, a pickle and some green olives on the side. I ate the entire meal! I was full and it felt good to be full. Granted I’ve been eating well for a year, and yes I’ve had a day or two out of the year where I went off protocol but this winter is the real test. It is making me feel total insecurity, anxiousness, doubt, and fear all coming to a head and exploding.

I need to let you all know that the struggle is real. Appreciate every whimsical chance you get to be with the ones you love. Eat like tomorrow you might not have another piece of food enter your mouth and pray, pray your illness can be fought and won and don’t ever give up. Listen for that still small voice in your head, but most of all, HEAR what it is saying.

This week we’re back to the brisk cold, the clouds swallowing the sun whole, and me kicking myself in the butt for breaking! I need to get back into my exercise routine that winter curtailed even if it is on a bike that sits inside four walls. I need to be lifted up instead of feeling down, even if that means I need to stay away from everyone and their great food filled lives, I need to listen to that still small voice telling me to wake up, I’m not alone! I need to feel Jesus, tapping me on the shoulder telling me He is right here beside me, that He made it, He put satan in his place and we can go on from today with our heads held high. We embrace… I’m not alone. 

God is good, all of the time. All of the time, God is good!

Jas. 1:2-5 “My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations;
Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience.
But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing.
If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.”

All praise and Glory to God!

Friday, February 16, 2018

The Outbreak of Insanity

Isa. 65:17 "For, behold, I create new heavens and a new earth: and the former shall not be remembered, nor come into mind."

The Outbreak of Insanity

As I sit in the quiet of the morning reading, writing, pondering I look out the window at darkness. Soon light starts giving shape and form to objects, then the sun ascends lending warmth to all of the earth. That’s a cosmic take on how my morning begins.

On a spiritual level, I look out at the darkness and wonder who or what the depths of the night has smothered the previous day, darkened by insanity. It only takes one quick click to realize that the insanity has flooded the shores and the humans respond in anger and with that outburst of anger people die. 

It is well known that I’m weird, that I seek light before darkness and that I stay in the catacombs of my mind away from the outside forces that try to break me down. This past year has been no different where I kept all of the negativity at bay, choosing to hold onto a lightsaber in a world obsessed with a dark invader. I try to tell people about the effects of negativity on every single thing on this earth and out in the cosmic realm too, but I’m laughed at because, in reality, people don’t see light and dark, they don’t see energy as positive and negative, they see here and now and nothing more.

Here’s a science lesson for you today. Toxins are a form of negative energy. The releasing of toxins in your system all has a negative effect on every aspect of your health on a cellular level that makes up this body. This is why disease strikes. In some way, you understand this but are resistant because you believe you fill yourself with enough positive to keep any illness away from you. 

When tragedy strikes, you are saddened, you hurt, you’re angry, and you’re filled with disgust. You try to throw a speck of positivity into the mixture like adding water to oil. The oil is a tiny particle of negative energy trying to penetrate the overflowing positive soul. Your positive crumbs add very little to the realm of negative energy

We live in a world where insanity is overflowing. Like mold clinging to the dampened walls, a good scrub will not eradicate the fungus. Cancer is very much like a dirty fungus invading a body, a powerful scrubbing will appear to be cleaning you up but if you don’t change the toxins that created the mold; the fungus is going to continue to fester in a weakened body that no longer has the ability to fight off the growth.

My cells are damaged. I know because I have an internal system overrun with a fungus that a good radioactive cleaning doesn’t hold the power to cleanse. I remember being told by an oncologist that radiation would ‘take care’ of my psoriasis too as well as the dark invader of my cells. What he didn’t want to say was how the radiation would also kill the only good, living, combating cells that were left in my molecular structure. In other words, he wanted to add oil (radiate) to water (my spirit-filled soul). 

Your body is over 50% water, depending on the toxins or non-toxic level of input to your system. Fatty tissue contains less water than the lean meat of your body. If you’re overweight, that means you have an intense toxic system and more likely to get sick often and are basically a highway for virus’ and infections to invade. Eating the occasional salad is not going to help clean up the cells of your compromised system.

Sure you can get a quick fix, doctor’s offices hand out prescription candy like it was a trick-or-treat festival, come one come all, have some candy to poison your system. You can take the positive route or take the highway to hell, just don’t assume a salad is going to save you in a toxic world.

I woke this morning with the Son in my soul. Even though the clouds hide the sun, He is still there., every minute of every day. I could’ve gone to the negative news stream, allowed the insanity to penetrate my day and try and drown out the garden I have planted in my soul blooming for all of the world to see or for none to see.

While dark matter is its own force to reckon with the penetrating culprit of negativity cannot lead us. We must rise above the realms of darkness and allow the Light to filter out our toxic garbage.

Philip. 4:8 “Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.”

When we take a stand and actually work for change, change will happen. If you don’t change your entire being (the toxins you put in your system, the hate you spew, the negative thoughts you allow to seep in) nothing is going to change. Here is an excellent link to guide you to change. It is well worth the read.

As I go on my weird merry way I am continually working toward change. I am only one person setting out to change the view of the world. We cannot allow insanity to leak in and damage our hard work to change. Change your mind, body, and soul and you change the outbreak of insanity across the world!

Pss. 111:5 "He hath given meat unto them that fear him: he will ever be mindful of his covenant."

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

God Is Not Silent

Pss. 28:1 “Unto thee will I cry, O LORD my rock; be not silent to me: lest, if thou be silent to me, I become like them that go down into the pit.”

God Is Not Silent

It is so easy to see God as the silent type when suffering is at your doorstep and you’re begging for help that never seems to arrive. You ask for prayers to be answered, you’re pleading for compassion for your cause, you implore Him to come and relieve your stress but all seems lost and broken. Prayers are hanging in the balance as you impatiently wait for a response.

It is during this time when you begin to doubt and fear whether God even exists and hears you. It is during these times of slow-moving molasses you let fear trickle into your thoughts. Sometimes you see me as a strong woman barreling through doubts and fears but let me tell you, I have days when I too say, My God my God why hast though forsaken me?

Zech. 2:13 “Be silent, O all flesh, before the LORD: for he is raised up out of his holy habitation.”

Let me just say up front, I never doubt that God exists or fear that He’s not hearing me. I know He exists and hears me but for brief moments like when you’re waiting for honey to drip, by the time the drop makes it to the intended place, there’s a smidgen of Him just seemingly letting you fall on your face.

I know it seems like He’s silent but I also know from experience this is when He is doing His finest work. It’s me who feels I’m not patient enough, or I feel insignificant but rest assured, with every breathtaking sunrise He lets me know He’s there, listening and working for the greater good.

Job 4:16 “It stood still, but I could not discern the form thereof: an image was before mine eyes, there was silence, and I heard a voice, saying,”

When I was first diagnosed with the disease of a lifetime, I prayed like never before. I begged and pleaded for a miracle that never came and I know full well because I was praying for a whoosh of a magical wand and the reappearance of a normal looking breast and all of this would be whisked away and put into the bad memory box.

God is NOT Merlin the magician! Did He just whoosh Jesus’ suffering away? And here He was God in the flesh suffering bleeding, begging, pleading. Jesus died. While this very well could be my fate, I don’t believe for one minute God is silently planning my demise. He could have had me go the slice, dice, chemo method but that song was not my dance. That was the dance for millions of other people.

He also could’ve just taken me right away, why give me a warning and a chance to change? God works in mysterious ways and while we’re straggling along in a world of distractions, He’s not being silent. He is busy at work preparing the entry of billions of souls to His banquet, in His time, not our time. A legion of Angel’s awaits our arrival and the song of the choir will ring out for us to dance among the stars.

God was not silent when Valentine was imprisoned then beheaded. He allowed such a horrendous physical act to take place because it would one day be a day cherished for all of the love that Valentine brought to the world. Valentine would be remembered for hundreds of years for his earthly love! God is LOVE!

My hope is that God is not preparing me for such a horrible death but for a wonderful life of endurance, patience and beauty that will be carried into the future of those who remember my time here. My prayer is no longer for myself, it’s for the people who need to see, this day and age, that God is never silent. Oh no, He is very much alive and busy at work!

He could’ve given me an instant miracle but what would I or anyone learn from that? He needs the world to see that there are steps to take, patience that is needed, endurance and unfathomable strength to make it to His bountiful banquet. 

He has me writing, teaching and learning at the same time as you. Although He could at any given moment pretend to be a magician for those who need instant gratification, once again, God is not of the fantasy world and He most definitely is not a magician.

Do I paint a grim picture of a punishing God? A God who wants to see you suffer? You’re wrong. Like your very own mother and father, do you see them as the punishing, child-reprimanding beasts that you saw as a child? I know children of an abusive background might see their parents as demons incarnate but the majority of people reading this right now all have been chastised as a child. We were not created as instant all-knowing adults, no, we had to grow and learn from our mother, father, and our surroundings to be who we are today.

If you look at the grand picture, we were once seeds! Watered and nurtured, pruned and snipped, given the right non-toxic fertilizer to bloom and grow. There were times in our life where we didn’t receive enough sun, we were stunted by toxins, and left to learn before growing again. I can’t paint a more poignant picture than that. 

God was not silent then and He most certainly is not silent now! As I endure another day filled with supplements, a disfigured image in the mirror, and a strict diet that will save my life, you might ask, is all of this worth it? And I will say to you now as I did in the beginning, every day I get to see another sunrise is worth every step I take in the ballroom dance of life as I head to the eternal banquet of souls waiting to greet me. YES! Every struggling pain-filled step is worth the enormous abundance of LOVE that I have the pleasure to partake of!

All Glory to God in the Highest! 

Monday, February 12, 2018

What Can I Do For You?

Dan. 10:10 “And, behold, a hand touched me, which set me upon my knees and upon the palms of my hands.”

I asked Him, what can I do for you?

As I teeter on the brink of the beginning of the Lenten season, I asked what I could do for God. As in earlier years when I talk to God, He listens intently then gives me a softly whispered reply. This year his reply was ‘think about it’. What? Think about what? No, He’s not a God of confusion I knew what He meant but like so many other people who pray and want a simple answer, it is what it is, a simple reply.

You see, in years past I sacrificed by giving up meat, or Pepsi, one year I was told to blog for forty-five days straight. Since my illness has me sacrificing basically everything and He knows I’ve been a stoic woman strict in my protocol, God called for something different from me that I wasn’t expecting. Think about it. Now, you’re wondering, what, what did He want you to think about.

Here goes… He wanted me to prayerfully think about everything. Wow, that’s a tall order, you might say. Seriously, to me, it doesn’t seem like a sacrifice at all, and I wanted to do something grand, but there it is, ‘think about it’ plain and simple. 

Now you being on the outside looking into my window, reading my thoughts I put on my screen, you’re now thinking about it. Define ‘it’ if you can. Not so simple is it?

Before I write, I need to think of what I’m going to say. Before I pray I need to think what will be heard. Before I judge I need to think about the truth and if it will do more damage than good. Before I speak, I need to think. You might be saying that this is a quite simple task but not for me, the person still being molded into all He created me to be.

He knows me all too well, He knows I have a tendency to jump to a conclusion without thinking the scenario through and reacting to that too swiftly. Now He’s asking me to think before I act. You might be saying to yourself, “Oh I do that all the time.” Maybe you do but I don’t. Right there is a perfect example, I was going to write, “Yeah but you drink, eat, and fill yourself with toxins…” but I stopped and thought. Wow, He's quick! 

Yeah, it’s not going to be easy for me to think first. Luckily I have two more days to tell you what I really think. I’m kidding. I always speak my mind and sometimes, or so I’ve been told, I can be brutal in my honesty. I need to think before I speak/write and put my words more softly on the page before tapping out my aggravations. I can save my aggravations for my private pages of writing but even then, I will filter my thoughts and think first. You don’t know how challenging this is going to be for me. 

Now many of you might be familiar with the ‘Daniel Fast’, Lent is not the Daniel Fast. Lent is the season of remembrance of the days leading up to the Crucifixion of Christ, forty-five days to be more precise. They are similar in their purpose, to become spiritually closer to God, hunger for Him, physically and mentally in everything we do.

While some of you younger Christians, new to the faith, might misunderstand all of the activity surrounding lent and anything to do with fasting, let me try to explain it, gently. 

Let’s say you’re a new driver, what do you do to prepare for the exam? You study, you study your heart out so you pass, right? No, Christianity is not a test or the preparation for one, get that out of your head right now. New to the faith, you will read and read, and study the bible over and over until you feel comfortable with where you’re driving your life.

God is not a God who wants you comfortable because comfort causes complacency. God is a God of growth, we can only grow if we give new life to the skills we already have. We’ve studied and learned, we’ve passed the test but now we’re comfortable driving, in any kind of weather, we are in the driver seat. There it is, you are NOT in the driver seat. As a weathered Christian, you’ll learn quite quickly that God is always in the driver seat.

With your license in hand, well versed in driving the open roads, you need to learn something new that will enable you to drive on an ice skating rink. This is where fasting comes in; to spiritually grow we need knowledge and to fill up the tank for the long drive. Since we’re smug in our sense of security, if you’ve lived in Florida all of your life and you move to Colorado, you’ll quickly realize there is more to learn with your driving skills. There is always more to learn as a Christian. God does not like conceited Christians.

Fasting humbles the soul. I’m reminded of the Sermon on the Mount in Matthew 5:3-12

Blessed are the poor in spirit, 
for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 

Blessed are they who mourn, 
for they shall be comforted. 

Blessed are the meek, 
for they shall inherit the earth. 

Blessed are they who hunger and thirst for righteousness, 
for they shall be satisfied. 

Blessed are the merciful, 
for they shall obtain mercy. 

Blessed are the pure of heart, 
for they shall see God. 

Blessed are the peacemakers, 
for they shall be called children of God. 

Blessed are they who are persecuted for the sake of righteousness, 
for theirs is the kingdom of heaven." 

Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake.

Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.

The Daniel Fast (Old Testament) is the epitome of the Beatitudes (New Testament). God wants us to draw spiritually closer to Him. He knows we don’t have much time left. He calls each and every one of us to be filled with the Spirit and He also knows the only way for humans to appreciate all that we have is by taking something away, hence the fasting. It brings about a spiritual closeness to God that we may have never comprehended. We allowed our egos to drive our car and control our every step for far too long. Now I’m going to ask you, my friends, to ‘think about it’, plain and simple.

Eph. 6:10 “Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might.”

Luke 22:43 “And there appeared an angel unto him from heaven, strengthening him.”

Saturday, February 10, 2018

Quotation Saturday ~ Lent, Fasting, Strength

 Pss. 35:13 “But as for me, when they were sick, my clothing was sackcloth: I humbled my soul with fasting; and my prayer returned into mine own bosom.”


"Prayer is reaching out after the unseen; fasting is letting go of all that is seen and temporal. Fasting helps express, deepen, confirm the resolution that we are ready to sacrifice anything, even ourselves to attain what we seek for the kingdom of God."
~ Andrew Murray

"As Lent is the time for greater love, listen to Jesus' thirst...'Repent and believe' Jesus tells us. What are we to repent? Our indifference, our hardness of heart. What are we to believe? Jesus thirsts even now, in your heart and in the poor -- He knows your weakness. He wants only your love, wants only the chance to love you." 
~ Blessed Teresa of Calcutta

"Nothing, how little so ever it be, if it is suffered for God's sake, can pass without merit in the sight of God."
~ Thomas a Kempis

“Simply put, we suffer a little to attain a lot. We sacrifice for Him because He sacrificed for us. We love because He loved us.”
~ Joni Zipp


“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish, but have eternal life.”
John 3:16

"Everything in life has its own time. There is time to celebrate and there is time to mourn. This is the time for reflection and transformation. Let us look within and change into what we ought to be." 
~ Aaron Saul

“The Seven Social Sins are:
Wealth without work.
Pleasure without conscience.
Knowledge without character.
Commerce without morality.
Science without humanity.
Worship without sacrifice.
Politics without principle.

From a sermon given by Frederick Lewis Donaldson in Westminster Abbey, London, on March 20, 1925.” 
~ Frederick Lewis Donaldson

“Sacrifice is a part of life. It's supposed to be. It's not something to regret. It's something to aspire to.” 
― Mitch Albom


“Let us not believe that an external fast from visible food alone can possibly be sufficient for perfection of heart and purity of body unless with it there has also been united a fast of the soul. For the soul also has its foods that are harmful. Slander is its food and indeed one that is very dear to it. A burst of anger also supplies it with miserable food for an hour and destroys it as well with its deadly savor. Envy is food of the mind, corrupting it with its poisonous juices and never ceasing to make it wretched and miserable at the prosperity and success of another. Vanity is its food which gratifies the mind with a delicious meal for a time but afterward strips it clear and bare of all virtue. Then vanity dismisses it barren and void of all spiritual fruit. All lust and shift wanderings of heart are a sort of food for the soul, nourishing it on harmful meats but leaving it afterwards without a share of its heavenly bread and really solid food. If then, with all the powers we have, we abstain from these in a most holy fast our observance of the bodily fast will be both useful and profitable.” 
~ John Cassian

“Fasting from any nourishment, activity, involvement or pursuit—for any season—sets the stage for God to appear. Fasting is not a tool to pry wisdom out of God's hands or to force needed insight about a decision. Fasting is not a tool for gaining discipline or developing piety (whatever that might be). Instead, fasting is the bulimic act of ridding ourselves of our fullness to attune our senses to the mysteries that swirl in and around us.” 
~ Dan B. Allender

“The greatest enemy of hunger for God is not poison but apple pie.
It is not the banquet of the wicked that dulls our appetite for
heaven, but endless nibbling at the table of the world. It is not
the X-rated video, but the prime-time dribble of triviality we
drink in every night.” 
~ John Piper

“Fasting is giving up something that you are imprisoned by, addicted to, or hold onto to tightly. Let it go for 40 days for the God who gave you life. After 40 days, you’ll wonder why the addiction held you captive.”
~ Joni Zipp


“My scars remind me that I did indeed survive my deepest wounds. That in itself is an accomplishment. And they bring to mind something else, too. They remind me that the damage life has inflicted on me has, in many places, left me stronger and more resilient. What hurt me in the past has actually made me better equipped to face the present.” 
~ Steve Goodier

“The times are chaotic. For me, I would hope that people look at [Angel] and gain strength by it. With everything that I do, I hope that they see people struggling to live decent, moral lives in a completely chaotic world. They see how hard it is, how often they fail, and how they get up and keep trying. That, to me, is the most important message I'm ever going to tell.” 
~ Joss Whedon

“We're not alone--at least, we're alone only if we choose to be alone. We're alone only if we choose to go through life relying solely on our own strength rather than learning to draw upon the power of God. ” 
~ Sheri Dew

“Some see my strength as bravery, I see it as endurance to live the life I’ve always lived. My strength comes from the eternity I aspire to live in the hereafter.”
~ Joni Zipp

Dan. 9:3 “And I set my face unto the Lord God, to seek by prayer and supplication, with fasting, and sackcloth, and ashes:”