Sunday, December 26, 2010

Mental Illness, Part Two

So, I went for many years believing that all mental illness was a sin and was basically the fault of the individual who had it. I know that deep down in my heart I was wrong, but it would take a truly tough lesson from the LORD to change my beliefs.
In January of 1998, I began to notice that my daughter was starting to act very possessively of her items. She was writing her name on everything that she owned. She kept everything she could. She wouldn't get rid of anything. She hoarded paint chips, sales flyers, catalogs, pieces of paper, books, magazines, anything that she could read, toys from her childhood, all kinds of stuff that made no sense. This went on for months and I finally couldn't take the mess any longer. She watched as I went through the piles of stuff. I could tell that she was upset about the whole thing, but didn't realize how upset until later. That evening she was muttering and grumbling to herself and was very angry. She began to pinch her neck leaving red marks. I thought she was just being a normal teenage brat.
During this time, I also began to talk with her about the fact that she is autistic. For all her life we had avoided this subject like the plague. I did NOT want her to be autistic and to admit it felt like tremendous shame. She was my only child. I had been lead to believe when she was three years old that if she got the proper training that she would no longer have any disabilities. And the only exposure I had had to autism was through my older brother and my sister-in-law's sister who had both worked with the severely autistic. Autism felt like a prison sentence in isolation without the possibility of parole. This was not what I wanted for my precious daughter. However, as soon as we began to discuss the facts of autism with our child, we all started to change for the better. We learned so much about this developmental disability and about our daughter. But she also hated it! She hated that she would not be able to join the military. She hated that she would not be able to become an astronaut. She hated that she would not be able to become a pilot. She hated and rebelled against the limitations that this disorder placed upon her life.
April, on her 16th birthday, when I expected things to calm down and for her to act more mature, the exact opposite happened. By then she was angry almost all the time. She muttered, grumbled, and complained through-out the day. The only time that she was calm was when she was asleep and she didn't sleep that much. She also started to throw things so that she could break them.
By the time June rolled around, she was hitting herself, pinching her neck, yelling at people who she saw in her room (but they were actually miles, if not a thousand miles away), was full of anger, and was throwing and breaking lots of things. She accused people of taking her things, of lying about her, of mocking her, and of teasing her. She could clearly see and hear these people, but there was no-one there. She would write horrible notes about these people and about the awful things that she wanted to do. There were days when she would cry out to me that she wished she was dead and that her tormentors would also die.
It was a horrible time in our home. We didn't know what to do and what to think. Of course I thought she was demon possessed. I begged God to heal my daughter like he had done for the woman in Matthew 15:21-28. It was during one of those times that the Holy Spirit spoke to me and asked me if I would be like Abraham and trust God with my only child. Would I even be willing to totally sacrifice myself from my daughter and allow the LORD to fully have control over her. It was very hard for me to do that, but with much tears and pain I finally laid my child on the altar and surrendered her completely to God.
From then on, things began to change for the better. Out of desperation we finally got our daughter in to see a psychiatrist. He immediately put her on medication. I cried for 24 hours. I felt like I had given in to the Devil. But the Holy Spirit comforted me. It took many tests, many different doctors, many different medications, many years, and even video-taping our daughter to show her that there was no one who was truly tormenting her before we "conquered" this pychosis.
Next time I will write more about the truth that I learned.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas to one and all. I hope that it will be a blessed day full of memories that you will carry with you for a lifetime.
The greatest gift that was ever given is still available for you to accept today. That is the presence of God in your life. God gives to you the opportunity to receive Jesus Christ as your very own, personal Saviour. No strings attached. One size truly does fit all. He never gets dull, never goes out of style, never runs down, never breaks, and never leaves. All you need to do is realize that you are a sinner bound for hell, believe that God loves you and that Jesus died on the cross shedding his blood to pay the penalty for all of your sin, and then just ask him to come into your life as your Saviour. It is as easy as that. Anyone can do it. Why not you? Why not now? It is the best gift in the whole world and it's waiting just for you.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Mental Illness, Part One

Many years ago, as a young christian, I attended a church where the preacher told me that mental illness is from the devil. He quoted to me II Timothy 1:7, "For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind." He stated that if God gave us a "sound mind", then who was it that gave us a "troubled mind"? had to be Satan. I trusted this preacher and from then on believed that any mental illness came from the devil. This also meant that the person who had the illness must have sinned. It just made sense to me that sinfulness and mental illness went together.
During this same time, I learned that mental illness and the taking of medications for it were sinful. There was no reason to take medications because if you just got right with God, then you wouldn't have any mental problems. Taking medicine was almost like doing drugs. It would alter your mind and make you susceptible to more satanic influence. Since mental illness was from the devil, then medications for it must also be from the devil. Even that made sense to me.
I heard the lessons about the demoniac(s) of Gadara found in Matthew 8, Mark 5, and Luke 8. These guys were possessed with devils. One guy was so tormented by them that the book of Mark describes him in grim detail. This guy definitely had mental illness, and he was possessed by a legion of demons. There is no greater "proof text" used to prove that mental illness comes from the devil. Especially since this man was delivered from his torment as soon as he "trusted in Jesus". The devils were cast out and there was peace.
This is what was taught to me and this what I believed for many, many years. I became very judgmental of anyone who had mental problems. They would be fine if they would only confess their sins and turn from them. I just knew that God would instantly heal them the same way he did when he delivered the demoniac of Gadara.
Join me again next time to read about what I learned many years later.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

It's My Birthday

Today is my birthday. I am so thankful to God for all of His blessings in my life. When I consider what He has done for me, I realize that my life is amazing. The greatest gift that I could ever receive was given to me freely, and that is the Lord Himself. Why He would love me, a rebellious sinner, is beyond my human comprehension. God loves me just because He is love and not because of anything that I have done. Thank you Lord!
Guess what? God also loves you no matter what you do or don't do. There is nothing that can change the Lord. He is the same yesterday, today, and forever.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Caring people

I just want to thank the LORD for providing caring people when there was a need. Last Monday, we had a freaky storm that caught most of us off guard. It had been forecasted, but I for one, never thought it would hit our county as bad as it did. It was like a winter hurricane. There wasn't much snow, but there was lots of wind and very cold temperatures. It caused the roads to turn into ice arenas, and since we live in an area with lots of hills, it made for extrememly dangerous driving.
Rebekah was at work in the next town. We thought that Jerry would be able to go get her as he had a four-wheel drive he was using as he patrolled Port Orchard. There was no way that I would be able to go get her because I would get stuck. However, Jerry was not able to go as he was extremely busy with accident investigations.
The power went out all over the south end of our county. Ours included. It was all I could do to keep the house above 60 degrees while the wind howled and the temperatures continued to fall. I began to worry about Rebekah and how she would get home. Jerry and I made several calls to her cell-phone and to her boss, but we couldn't get through to anyone. She was about to get off work when Jerry thought of calling the base police. What a fantastic idea!
One of the police officers was able to "grab" Rebekah before she got outside the gate. He took her to the Quarter Deck where she got to meet the base commander. (That was a real treat for her.) She was entrusted to the car of a navy seaman (seawoman) who looked after Bekah until the gal got off work. This gal was even willing to bring Rebekah home until she learned how bad the roads were. They tried to get her a room in the base motel, but that wasn't allowed.
By midnight I was stressed to the max and tried to keep busy in our dark house. I wanted Rebekah home as I was afraid they would put her out of the base when the navy gal left. However, they were taking good care of my "baby". They got her a blanket and pillow and allowed her to sleep in one of the offices. What a kind gesture.
Jerry was able to come home by 12:30am and I could then begin to relax. The power came back on soon there after and I decided to go to bed. Early the next morning we were up and off to Bremerton to retrieve our Rebekah. She had a great time staying at the base. And we are so thankful for the kind and caring base police officer, the base commander, and the navy seaman who took such great care of our precious daughter. All praise to God who provides all of our needs.

Monday, November 22, 2010


This is my favorite time of the year. I love Thanksgiving. Many years ago, I decided that I would take one day a week and make it a day of giving thanks to the Lord. I don't ask for anything on that day. I just spend it in reflecting on the goodness of God and His many blessings. It has been hard some weeks as things seem to come up that I need to ask for, but I don't, I just thank God for the situation and how He will work it out. I challenge others to try to do the same thing. I chose to make Tuesday as my day of thanks giving. It used to be Thursday, but that is my day for praying for the requests that were mentioned at church on Wednesday evening.
Thanksgiving needs to be more than just one day a week. It needs to actually be a daily event. The LORD is so good to us. He daily loads us with benefits. The fact that you are reading this is not just one blessing, but many. You are alive, you have eyes, you can read, you have access to a computer, you have electricity, you have air to breath, you have food to eat and drink to drink to be able to sustain you, and so much more.
God's Word is full of references to giving thanks to the Lord. One of my favorites is Ephesians 5:20, "Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ." Sometimes it is hard to obey this verse, but just make yourself do it. It is amazing how much better you will feel about the situation.
So, Happy and Blessing Thanksgiving to one and all. I hope that you will begin to celebrate thanks giving every day.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010


I am in the process of learning a lesson from the LORD. It isn't an easy lesson because it deals with a major area of my life. Attitude!!!
For the last few weeks I have been doing a verse by verse study of Colossians 3. I have been tremendously blessed by all of the truth that I am finding in this chapter. It was one that I memorized years ago and I shared another blessing that I got from it in one of my other posts. However, it wasn't until last week, when I was studying verses 12-15 that a mega truth was showed to me.
It was 34 years ago that I accepted Christ as my Saviour and began to grow as a christian. I attended a good church however, they very much stressed that to be a good christian you had to do this and you had to do that. I lived on a guilt trip for many, many years. Then I went to another good church that said it made no difference what you did, but it mattered who you are. Well, that really confused me. Did that mean that I could basically do whatever I wanted and it would be okay? Who was I suppose to be? And how could I be that if I didn't do something to become that way? So, I just muddled along doing what I thought the Bible wanted me to do, and not doing what I shouldn't, and then not doing what I should, and doing what I shouldn't. It was so hard to do the right thing. (And it still is!)
So, last week when the LORD gave me a tremendous blessing of Truth, I was so happy...and so sad. Happy to understand, yet sad to realize what I need to do because it is so hard for me to do that which is the right thing to do when I don't always want to do it.
Col. 3:12-15, list some of the things that we are to "put on". "Put on" means to clothe yourself. (Just a side note! Since I have lost 35 pounds it is much more joyful to clothe myself.) Anyway, back to God's Word....We are to clothe ourselves with kindness, meekness, humbleness of mind to name just a few. At first I thought these were just good deeds, but when the Holy Spirit said, "Take a closer look." I realized that these are all attitudes. They are all things that we are to put on within our heart and mind. We are to have the right attitudes!
Anyone can do a good deed, but do they do it with an attitude of kindness? Many people do acts of "charity", but do they have an attitude of charity? Some can put up with others for a long time, but are they longsuffering or are they just putting up?
I know that there have been many times in my life when I did the "right thing" outwardly, but in my heart I had a rebellious attitude or was full of pride or felt slighted. I finally understand that if I have the proper attitude then the proper behavior will follow. It needs to start in the heart and mind. I need to "put on" the right attitudes before I can do the right deeds in the right way and for the right reason.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Just a truth

Exodus 20:15, "Thou shalt not steal." Four very simple words and yet very profound when put together in this sentence. What is the basic meaning of "steal"? Answer, To take something that is not yours. That something could be anything and everything.
Last month the LORD began to convict me about something in this area. It is a government program that many, many have had to use in the last couple of years. I believe it is a good program....until it starts to go beyond the realm for which it was created. I am talking about unemployment. All those who are rightfully employed (and their employers) have to pay into this program. If they ever get laid off from their jobs, then the unemployment program pays them back what they have already contributed. However, with America's economics being so bad, there has been something extra added to unemployment. It is called emergency unemployment. It gives out more money to those who are still not employed. I thought it was pretty nice, until the LORD helped me to realize that the emergency monies were not coming from the one who was once employed, it is coming from the monies of those who are still employed...and that is stealing. That emergency money does not belong to those who are unemployed, it belongs to those who are contributing it.
Once I understood what was happening, I repented of stealing, and took a step of faith. We stopped receiving unemployment for my daughter. Guess what? Within a week of doing that which the LORD commanded, He blessed her with a wonderful new job.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Freaky Friday part 2

If I thought Friday, October 1st was freaky, I wasn't prepared for Friday, October 8th. I awoke at 1:22am needing to use the bathroom. My guts felt like they were going to erupt. I thought it was just gas, but a few minutes later I gently got back out of bed and tried to walk around. The pain only got worse. I got on the internet to see what it could be and it said that if I had severe upper quadrant pain to go to the hospital immediately. By this time, I could barely walk, but had to wake Jerry.
At the Urgent Care, the pain was so bad, I was in tears and could no longer move without crying out loud. The doctor tried to examine my tummy, but his gentle touch felt like knives. They finally gave me a shot of strong narcotics and sent me by ambulance to Harrison ER. I don't remember much except them doing an ultrasound and determining that I needed to be admitted. I spent the rest of the morning trying to sleep and giving myself pain relief. It was so nice to have the self-administered pain-relief machine hooked up. The pain would have been tremendously horrible if I didn't have constant medication.
They finally took me into surgery Friday evening. It didn't take long for them to get me from my room and into the surgery to remove my gall bladder. The next thing I remember was waking up and being taken back to my room. It was so fast, but actually took two and a half hours.
It was so nice to be able to come back home on Saturday afternoon. There truly is no place like home. If it feels great to be back in my earthly home, I can't imagine how blessed it will be when I get to my heavenly home.
All praise and thanksgiving goes to the LORD God who gave me such peace and His blessings in this trial of affliction.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

A Freaky Friday

Last Friday was freaky for me. I had an interview that morning at a school where I had worked six years ago. It would only be a three hour, temporary position that I thought would be perfect. I had enjoyed working at this school, especially since the principal was a christian who had prayed with me when I went through a difficult situation. So, I was fairly confident that I would get this new job and couldn't wait to see the principal again.
It had been several months since I had colored my hair, so, I figured that I should do it before I went to the interview. Somewhere in the back of my brain was that small voice that kept saying, "Don't do it! Don't do it! Don't do it or you'll be sorry." I should have listened! Even though the hair dye wasn't the same brand that I always use, it was the same color....NOT!!! When I pulled the towel off my head, I almost fainted. I had ink-black hair and looked like Goth-girl. All I needed was a few chains and some piercings. I was devastated. I had no time to fix it. So, I chose clothes that I thought would down-play the hair. I got out the blow-drier and did the best I could.
As I pulled into the school, feelings of remorse overwhelmed me. "Maybe the principal will forget what I use to look like. Maybe I should call in sick and ask to reschedule. No, it's too late. Maybe the principal won't notice."
Waiting for the interview was torture. My brain just reeled. Half an hour after I arrived, the principal came out to shake my hand. I could tell by the tiniest look on his face that he was shocked at my hair. We sat down in his office, and to my regret, he informed me that the position was a very physical one. That was pretty much the end of the interview. We chatted for a few more minutes as I brought him up to date on my last five years of employment. As we got ready to leave his office, he asked the question I had dreaded, "Didn't you use to be a brunette?"
I couldn't get home fast enough. My fragile emotions were about to erupt. As soon as I ran in the house I grabbed a towel and the shampoo. I used it, but nothing happened. My hair-stylest had told me to try baking soda if you wanted to wash out a coloring. All that did was make my hair extremely dry. Then I remembered my mom telling me decades ago that girls used to use peroxide to lighten their hair. Gave that a try and all it did was disinfect my kitchen drain. I was now desperate. I went for the bleach. My mom had also told me that there were bleached blonds. It didn't matter to me if my hair fell out, so long as it wasn't black anymore. It took a lot of nerve to try the bleach. (Yes, it was diluted.) Then the tears began to flow. As I poured on the bleach, the tears poured from my eyes. I was so frustrated by the hair and by the job I wouldn't get. My sweet daughter was there to comfort. The main thought that kept running through my mind was, "Vanity, thy name is Alice."
It seemed that there was nothing more that I could do to get rid of the hideous color in my hair. Until, the Holy Spirit (that small voice) seemed to say, "Go to Fred Meyer, they have something that will work." Sure enough, there in the hair coloring was a wonderful box called "OOPS". It was a strong chemical, but it worked. It stripped out the black and left me with the natural color of my hair. It was a literal pain to use, but well worth it. My sanity was restored.
Proverbs 31: 30 (a verse I memorized years ago and need to continually apply), "Favour is deceitful, and beauty is vain: but a woman that feareth the LORD, she shall be praised."

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Peace perfect peace

There is nothing like the peace of mind that comes from the LORD.
For the last several weeks, ever since the weather began to change, I have been wondering what I should do. The weather can have a negative impact of those who have fibromyalgia or arthritis or other body ailments. It seems to be worse when we are going from high pressure to low. The aches and pains that seem to be doing better, get instantly worse.
I began to think about going south for the next six or seven months. But the thought of being away from my family was horrid. Then we began to talk about the three of us moving. But the thought of being away from home was awful. And I didn't know if I would be able to withstand the discomfort if I stayed here. We were in a quandry about what to do.
Of course we took it to the Lord in prayer and were just waiting for His answer. So, last week I listed all the possible options and left blank spaces for the "pro and con" under each one. I told my family to give their input as well. The paper sat around for a week until Rebekah finally wrote a few things. The saddest was how much she would miss her mom.
The Bible says for us to trust in the Lord and to seek His will. I was doing that, but it seemed I wasn't getting a clear answer until I read what my daughter had wrote on that list of options. God has given me great peace to just stay here. I know that there will be days of pain and frustration, but more than anything, there will be days full of blessings of being right where I home.

Sunday, September 26, 2010


I was studying the Bible this morning and was once again blessed by Colossians 3:3, "For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God." When I accepted Christ as my Saviour, the old, dead self was taken away, and I became a new and living soul and spirit in Christ. I don't understand how it all happens, I just know that it did. Before Christ, I was religious and rebellious. I felt dead inside. However, when I finally understood what Jesus did for me on the cross, I was convicted of the fact that I was going to Hell unless I called upon the name of the LORD. As soon as I did, it was as if the old me was taken away and a new me came. I admit that I have sinned greatly many times since that day, but I feel horrible when I do. That never happened before Christ. Back then, I simply didn't care what I did.
Today, as I was looking at my 2004 journal once again, I found an entry that I thought I should share. It is from 3-30-04, "For the last couple of days, I have been reading my journals from 1992 & 1993. That was when we started getting "entangled" with ATI and their "law" beliefs. I'm sure that they are sincere in their motives and beliefs. However, I also believe they are wrong. We are not justified by the "law"; we are set free from it and justified by the Lord, Jesus Christ. Because of that, we are then free from the power of sin to live in the power of the Holy Spirit. Yes, we are to live a life that is pleasing to God, especially in accordance to Paul's epistles. Not to be "approved", but because we love and fear the Father...out of obedience.
I am thankful for the things we learned in ATI, but I am even more thankful that we were set free from the "bondage". It is such a joyful and peaceful feeling to know that I am accepted and justified fully in Christ. There is nothing that I can do to make myself more holy in God's sight.
Daily, yea, hourly, yea, every moment, I have the choice of Whom I serve and why. Whether it be Christ or sin. I try to always choose Christ and yield my members as instruments of righteousness unto holiness.
This freedom has brought more peace and unity to our family. We realize that we will each stand alone before our God. The Holy Spirit indwells and works His way within us individually according to the will of God; not according to my will. Am I still burdened and grieved over sin? Of course! Do I wish that we were more spiritual? Yes! I know that there is room for improvement, but that is not my responsibility to anyone but myself. And that is why I am trying to apply God's Word to my life as the Holy Spirit leads and empowers me."

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Sandwich living

One of my favorite sandwiches is one that I get from a local restaurant. It is toasty warm filled with grilled chicken breast meat, sprinkled with crisp bacon, and topped with melted cheese. I don't have it very often because of my choice to eat right. But when I do have it, I know that I am in for a messy meal because the sandwich also has a creamy garlic sauce spread on it. Once everything gets all melted together, it becomes a gooey, yummy, slippery mass inside the bun. The only way that I can eat it and not wear it, is to smash the bread together making sure that the seam of the roll is facing down and take my bites from the side. It only took me three times eating this type of sandwich to realize how to do it the right way.
Well, right now, at this time in my life, I am the filling inside that sandwich and if I do not stay inside of the bun, I am going to ooze out all over the place. I am squeezed on top by the stress of dealing with my daughter. I am squeezed on bottom by the stress of dealing with my mother. And I am melted together with the stress of my fibromyalgia. So, what is keeping this sandwich life from falling apart? It is the strong hands of the LORD. If I just stay right where I belong, I am safe from falling all over the floor. Thank God for His strength....and for those yummy sandwiches.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Applying God's Word

One of my most favorite things to do is to read. I especially love to read my journals. This post is about another one of the entries from my 2004 journal. It is sad to read it this time because the lesson that I should have learned back then has still not been fully learned as of today. However, the LORD is so gracious and long suffering. He still wants me to learn this lesson, and so, He has given me another opportunity to do that. I shall try to do much better this time.
So, here is the journal page from March 22, 2004,
"For the past 28 years, I have been reading and studying my Bible. I feel "dirty" if I don't read it every day. But the Holy Spirit is really working one me...that I should be doing more than just reading or studying the Book. I need to do more applying of God's Word. Reading is no more than a form of entertainment. I do that all the time. Studying is just a way of learning and understanding. Like what I did in college. But applying...that's where true wisdom comes in and Godly changes occur. My head is full of knowledge and understanding. There is even some wisdom in there. But it is all vain if it isn't applied. Such as "love your neighbor as yourself." I do like them, but I don't love them as I should. Or "greet the brethren." I barely even greet those that I know and am close to. Hmmm! Well, after 28 years, it is time to apply the Word of God. Not just read it and think that's enough."
So many of us wonder "what is the will of God for my life?" Well, Jesus said that if we love him we would keep his commandments. What are his commandments? That we would love the LORD with all our heart and soul and mind and strength. And to love our neighbor as ourself. It isn't reading the Bible nor understanding the Bible, it is applying the Bible by doing what it says. And that doesn't mean that we just do it in our own power, but that we do it because we love the LORD and want to do his will.
Those of you who read this blog, will you please pray for me to do God's will and apply His Word? And that I would start now and not wait? Thanks!

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Bible Wives Who Had to "Put-Up"

I can't believe that it was over six years ago that I wrote in my journal about Bible wives who had to "put-up". I had been thinking about being a christian wife and about the fact that so many christian wives do not "put-up". Instead, they leave. I couldn't help but wonder that if they had put-up and kept up an attitude of gratitude if God wouldn't have blessed them. I do admit though, that I have been tremendously blessed to be married to the greatest man in the whole world. But there have been times when I wasn't so grateful for him and did not have a godly attitude about it. Of course there were times when he drove me crazy, but there have been even more times when I am sure that I drove him crazy. However, we decided years ago that we would dedicate our lives to one another and to the LORD. It was a very stressful time in our lives back then and my depression was almost beyond belief. We took our daughter, Rebekah, who was terrified by what was happening to her mom and dad, and with her we made commitments to each other that we would never leave. That we would stay a family until God took us home to Heaven.
So, I thought that I would share this journal entry from February of 2004 (and add some additional comments):
"Sarah= she had to put-up with Hagar and the other concubines that her husband had. She messed up by giving her hand-maid, Hagar, to her husband, but later she admits her sin to Abraham. God then blessed her with the promised son, Isaac, who would become one of the fathers of the nation of Israel.
Hanna = she had to put-up with Penuel (her husband's second wife) who was able to have children by their husband. Penuel and her children were rude to Rachel and would make fun of for not having any children. Hannah maintained an attitude of submission and trust in the LORD. She made a promise to God and she kept it when God blessed her with a son. That son was Samuel, one of the greatest men in the Bible.
Rachel = she had to put-up with her dad's deception and with her older sister. Both of them tricked Rachel's intended on the day that should have been her marriage. So, instead of Rachel being wedded to Jacob, Leah was married first. Rachel had to wait her turn and from then on we see her in constant competition with her sister to see who would win the favor of their husband. I never do see Rachel change her attitude and I think because of that, we don't see the promised Messiah coming through her lineage, instead we see that Jesus comes from the tribe of Judah, one of Leah's many sons.
Michael = who loved David, was the first wife to marry him. She had to put-up with him abandoning her when David had to flee from her father, King Saul. However, I believe that she would have gone with David and would have been well protected. But she had to put-up with being left behind for many years. She had to put-up with being married to another man. She had to put-up with not being able to bear any children of her own. She had to put-up with David returning to Israel with a few more wives and their children. She had to put-up with being taken from her new husband to live with David and his other wives. Then she had to put-up with his behavior that she found offensive. Her attitude became very bitter towards her husband and because of it she became cursed and basically had to put-up with living the rest of her life as a "widow". And I think the worst of all, she had to put-up with the death of all the children she had raised for her sister who had died years earlier.
Abigail = she had to put-up with being married to the foolish Nabal and then becoming one of David's many wives. She had a humble attitude and because of it, her life was spared and she was able to have a son with her new husband, David.
Esther = first she had to put-up with the death of her parents when Assyria came to and basically destroyed Jerusalem. She not only lost her parents, but she lost her home. She later had to put-up with being entered into a "beauty contest" that would chose the next queen for the king of the country that had invaded Jerusalem in the first place. She always had a submissive and trusting attitude towards her older cousin who had raised her after the death of her parents. Because of that, God blessed her and allowed her to "win the beauty contest". History tells us that he wasn't the best dude in the world, so she had to put-up with being married to "the enemy" and to only see him when he requested her presence. God blessed her and used her to save her people (Jews) from another plot to have them destroyed."
I'm sure that we can think of other wives in the Bible who had to "put-up" with less than desirable situations. Most of them did it with godly attitudes and were then blessed because of it. I think that we christian wives could take encouragement from these women.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Enjoy Today

I thought that I would share another entry from one of my journals. This one come from January 1, 2004. (Hard to believe it was more than six years ago.)
"I read a very encouraging book last week titled, "I'm not Suffering From Insanity...I'm Enjoying Every Minute", By Karen Scalf Linamen. She write about the fact that the only time we have is the present and that we should savor it and live it, experience it and enjoy it. Too often we feel guilt ridden over the past and are too concerned about the much so, that we don't realize how blessed we are right now. I am going to try to do more "living" in the present this year."
I'm sorry to say, but I don't remember if I did more "living" or not in 2004. But I do know that I haven't been "living" lately. It has been overwhelming to just survive sometimes. The last couple of weeks have been full of stress. The stressful situations are still present, but I am so glad that they don't have to overwhelm me. They only do when I allow them to do so. I'm so blessed right now, this very minute. And I am going to enjoy it! God has given me eyes to behold, ears to hear, a mind to understand, and most of all...I have Him in my life.

Friday, August 20, 2010


I love my family. It is a blessing to still have my parents around. However, no longer is my mother the woman that I once knew. She has had dementia for several years. It has slowly, but surely eroded a woman who held such power in my mind.
This last week she called and asked us to come over and straighten out something. I knew that it had to be some sort of arguement that she was having with my dad. But it was worse, much worse. She was in tears telling us that Daddy would not let her stay home alone by herself. She couldn't believe that there was anything wrong with her. It was as if her mind had taken her back to thirty years ago. It took a call to my sister, my dad going to his appointment, and Jerry and I talking to her to get her to calm down. It was very stressful. This was the first time that she could not remember that she had dementia. Usually, she wants to always share with everyone that she has "three boyfriends": Luke Kemia, Art Ritis, and Al Himer (which is really D. Mentia). But not that day. She thought that all of us were in a conspiracy against her. That none of us had ever talked to her about this before. She was positive that it was my dad who had the problems and not herself.
It was nice once she finally calmed down. But, she never did return to the state where I had last scene her. She mentioned several times that it was nice to finally know what was wrong with her. Wow!
Since I have fibromyalgia and take medication, it is very hard for me when I get stressed out. And I have to say, this really stressed me out. For the next 24 hours, I was dead to the world. I am glad that we were able to go over and keep an eye on her while my dad went to his appointment. This is the blessing. The truth? That God knows all and that we can trust Him to do what is best.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Do Good

Oh how I can relate to Paul and his words in Romans 7:19, "For the good that I would I do not: but the evil which I would not, that I do." The apostle Paul was in a fix. He wanted to do good, but instead did that which was evil. As a christian, we struggle with the same dilema. At least I sure do. Or should I say, I sure am. I am struggling to do good, when in my mind, I want to do evil.
Long, long ago, in a land not very far away, I was abused as a child. Anger and hatred began to grow and grow in the furtile soil of my heart. By the time I became a young adult, I was full of the weeds and briars of consuming bitterness. I despised almost everyone in my life. Men most of all. I had a barrier of protection around me that I wouldn't allow anyone to enter. It was my place of safety. It was a miserable location for my soul to reside. All within was darkness and pain. But then the Holy Spirit began to do an amazing work of weeding. I was convicted of my own sin and graciously set free. Not just free, but free indeed. Completely set free. (If you want to know more about this, contact me.)
So, for the last couple of decades, I have been able to live in the light and freedom of God's grace. However, recently, the ugliness of anger has entered my mind. I learned of a woman who lived with a man and his girlfriend. This woman knew that the man had been previously convicted of child molestation. And yet, she brought her own young daughter into this house to live with her and this couple. Yes, you already know what happened, don't you? This man is now sitting jail, accused of molesting this precious child.
That story made me so angry at these adults. How dare they expose an innocent life to such evil. An evil that will stay with her for the rest of her life. (I know because it happened to me.) But....the story doesn't end there. This woman who lived with this couple is now pregnant with this creep's child. And the three adults in this story, are all supposed christians.
Now, do you see why I am so angry?!
What is the truth and blessing in this story? (Can you believe that there actually is one? Well, there is.) It is how this applies to my soul. It would be so easy for me to give myself completely over to anger and hatred, but that isn't who I am anymore. The Holy Spirit reminds me that I am to do good. There are few places in the Bible where it states specifically on what is sinful. You can usually figure it out by how God responds to what is being done or not done. And by what the Bible says that we should and should not do. But there is one place where it is very clear to each and every christian. This verse is very personal. James 4:17, "Therefore to him that knoweth to do good, and doeth it not, to him it is sin." So, I realize that I am to do good, no matter how I feel. And if I don't, then it is sin to me. It doesn't matter the sins that these other people have done, it matters that I don't sin myself by allowing evil to rule and reign in my soul. So, I chose to do good.
What does it mean for me to do good? I think John 15:17 says it very clearly. Jesus commands," These things I command you, that ye love one another." That means that I am to love those who sin as well as those who are righteous. It does not mean that I condone what the sinners do. Just that I am to allow God to love them through me...because like Paul, I cannot do that which is good. God must do it through me.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

A Blessing From Television

I never thought that I would receive a spiritual blessing from the television, but that is just what happened Wednesday evening. The last two days have been very rough for me. I over did it in the yard and then was feeling sorry for myself. It was frustrating and discouraging. I am ashamed to say that I was on a mega-pity-party. It seemed that the Lord had left me to flounder on my own and there was no comfort from the Holy Spirit nor the Word of God. It was awful!
All I had longed to do this week was to be able to attend every service at our church's annual Jubilee. Sunday and Monday had been such a blessing. But then Tuesday came along and it was horrid. Wednesday was full of tears and pleading with God for His grace. Never did I think it would come the way that it did.
Religious channels are not something that I watch. However, there wasn't much on the other television channels and I just felt that I should watch something "good" to get my mind off of myself. Since I couldn't make it to the Jubilee service, I decided one of the christian shows should be good. The show was hosted by a man named Andrew Wommac. He was telling a story about his youth. He was in college, but believed that God wanted him to quit. Almost everyone told him that this thought was of the devil and could never be from God. Only two of his closest friends told him to do what he believed God wanted him to do. Unlike Reheboam (see I Kings 12), he did not listen to the advice of his friends. He stayed in college, but never had any peace about it until God showed him this verse, Colossians 3:15, "And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to the which also ye are called in one body; and be ye thankful." (And this television guy actually quoted the King James Version.) He went on to talk about letting (allowing) the peace of God rule (have control) in our hearts (and minds). I was in tears and the realization broke upon my mind. This verse was for me. I had not LET (ALLOWED) the peace of God to RULE my heart.
Oh such peace flooded my soul when I let God come on in. My problems had been all my own fault. It wasn't God who wasn't at work in my life, it was my sin that was blocking the way. It is amazing that we limit the Lord. He is so much more than we could ever understand and I am so thankful for His Word that spoke to me last night...even if it was through the television.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

New Med

Well, since I last wrote, I have changed my blood pressure medication. I just couldn't take the dizziness anymore. So, the doctor put me on Benicar for a couple of weeks to see how I do. It has been almost a week and things seem to be going much better. I haven't been able to check the blood pressure level since the machine is "out of order" at Fred Meyer. However, the BP must be fine since I don't get the heat flushes when I work out. As a matter of fact, I was able to take an eight mile bike ride the other day and loved it. Sure I was exhausted that evening, but I didn't have a "fatigue attack" like I would have had. It is so nice to be able to do things that I haven't been able to do in almost three years. And to not need to sleep for the next 24 hours.
Another blessing that is happening in my family is that all three of us are losing weight. The "heart attack" scared me so much (and I think Jerry also), that all three of us have changed our eating habits for the good. This isn't a weight loss program, this is an eat correctly lifestyle that we have chosen.
Sometimes, God has to take some "drastic" measures to get our full attention, to get us to repent, and to get us to turn from our sinful ways. I am so glad that he loves us so much. What a truth and what a blessing

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Such Fun

Fibromyalgia has been such fun...especially lately.
Last month we took a camping trip to south central Oregon. I wound up in the hospital with what I thought was a heart attack. It was not a fun way to start our vacation. They kept me for the night and I didn't get much sleep at all. They discovered that I had high blood pressure. I really wasn't surprised because the medication (Savella) that I take for the fibro has that as a side-effect. It is a rare side-effect, but it is the one that affects me the most.
So, when I got back home, I went to a new doctor, since my insurance does not cover our family doctor anymore. The new doctor is very nice. She admits that she does not treat fibro, but is willing to work with me. She could at least help the high blood pressure. I started Lisinopril right away and it is helping. My only problem is that I am very sensative to medication and can usually take half the normal amount. Well, I started out on the full amount and within a week was suffering new side-effects. I became extremely dizzy, the fatigue was worse than ever, lasting for a week, and my body began to hurt as bad as it did before I began the Savella. It was awful not being able to function again. So, I looked up the side-effects for Lisinopril and found that folks who have an autoimmune problem, such as: Lupis, rheumatoid arthritis, and fibromyalgia need to have the amount adjusted since it causes the "disability" to become worse.
I decided to only take half the amount of Lisinopril and thought I should cut back on the Savella also. Wrong! I need the Savella!!! Within three days, pain returned to areas that haven't been painful since the Savella got to therapy doseage. So, I got back up to that level and am feeling much better.
Taking only one Lisinopril is working on the blood pressure. I still have some dizziness, fatigue, and pain. However, I am feeling the best I have felt in almost three years.
What is the truth and blessing through this experience? Well, it is the fact that Jesus will never leave me nor forsake me, no matter how awful I feel and no matter how discouraged I get. The Holy Spirit abides within everyone who has accept Jesus Christ as their Saviour and he brings such words of comfort, especially in the times of distress. We need to not listen to our emotions and feelings, but cling to the Word of God...which is the Truth.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Good and Bad

Our Faith Bible Institute recently did a "quick" study on the book of Job. There were a couple of points made by the instructor that were a blessing and I thought that I would share them with you.
"Theme: The contemplation of Israel's God's Sovereignty over Suffering. The theme of Job is not the suffering of Job (the secondary theme), but rather the sovereignty of God."
"The answer to the question, 'If God is all powerful, why didn't He crate a perfect world with no sin and suffering?' is He did. A perfect world, however, demands free will. No one wants to live in a world without freedom. God was not a heavenly tyrant who created a world of slaves and robots. He wanted us to love Him because we freely choose to do so."
"All suffering is ultimately the result of the entrance of sin into this world at the Fall."
"Though God could justly punish all men because of their inherent sinfulness, He does not. The real mystery is not, "Why do so many bad things happen to good people?', but rather, "Why do so many good things happen to bad people?'"
"Job, focused on the fact that God has given us all we have: life, health, wealth, family, ect. Thus, God has the perfect right to take these things and we have still been blessed to have had them for the period of time during which He blessed us with them."
"Scripture thus never forbids us to ask 'why?', for God will on occasion show us the answer, but it clearly forbids demanding an answer. In most instances of tragic suffering, we must accept that the 'why?' is beyond our understanding, but can always trust the God Who loves us and our loved ones even more thatn we do."
John Yates, Founder and President, Faith Bible Institute

Thursday, April 29, 2010

I love looking back at my old journals. It is amazing to see how much I have learned, how much I have changed, how much I have stayed the same, and how much the Lord has blessed me. I thought that I would share another entry with you. This one comes from 1988. I was the age that my daughter is now....weird!!!
"You know, it really bugs me that so many Christians are so wimpy (myself the worst). Satan, or the world, or whatever, comes along in our life and tempts us. It may be ever so gently and over we fall. Christians are suppose to "stand fast". I just can't believe how weak we are, and that bothers me. It makes me upset with me. Satan knows exactly what is our weakness and he knows exactly how to tempt us and how to make us fall. I bet he really gets a kick out of it!
Why can't we be stronger Christians? Don't we know who dwells within us? We can't stand by ourselves. That is why we fall so easily. We need to read the Bible more, we need to pray more, we need to give our lives completely to Jesus. We are but humans, but with Christ as our Saviour, with God as our guide, with the Holy Spirit as our power, we can withstand...coming out victorious, giving God all the glory."
Quite often I think about the "fear of the Lord" and that we Christians have no fear of Him. Last week as I was reading my Bible, the Holy Spirit spoke to me from Proverbs 19:23, "The fear of the LORD tendeth to life: and he that hath it shall abide satisfied; he shall not be visited with evil." Oh that we would fear the LORD!

Thursday, April 15, 2010


I was recently reading one of my journals from 2004. In it I came across an insite that the Lord had shown me. I haven't shared it with anyone other than the few junior high girls I taught in Sunday school six years ago. It was such an encouraging insite that I though I would share it with all of you.
The Lord spoke to me of how I "limit" His affect in my life. He is never changing. He doesn't get any more important, nor less significant. God is. And He is always the same. It is I who limit the amount of Him I perceive. Jesus Christ the same yesterday, today, and forever. It is my thoughts, emotions, and feelings that get in the way of what Christ can do with my life. It would be like having a bright flashlight. If I was to take a piece of cardboard and poke a hole in it and then place said cardboard over the flashlight, then the light that eminates through the hole would be much less than the flashlight can produce. The source of the light has not changed, only the amount of light that is allowed to pass through the cardboard. The cardboard represents me. The size of the hole in the cardboard is bigger or smaller depending on the size of the hole that I make and the amount of light that I allow to pass through. I guess another analogy would be the aperature on a camera. Have you ever looked inside the lens of a camera? Inside you can usually see the aperature. It can change size when the person operating the camera changes the settings. The opening of the aperature determines how much or how little light can be exposed on the film. There is so much that God can do in our lives if we would just let Him have control. He is so much more than our finite brains could ever comprehend, but we continue to limit Him in our lives. I sure know that I still do. Why? Maybe because I am afraid of what the light might expose.

Friday, April 2, 2010

Normal is a Blessing

When I was younger, I never thought that "normal" was a blessing. Normal was boring and I wanted to be different. Now that I have fibromyalgia, I realize how blessed it is to have a "normal" day.
There are days when I am in so much pain, or I am so tired, that I can't do anything except sit around or sleep. It is then that I get very frustrated and discouraged. I begin to feel like my life is never going to be "normal" again.
Ever since I was a young woman I have had a Type-A personality. I loved being busy and spending every moment doing something...anything. Sitting around the house was not a part of my life. It was fun being busy. It seemed that life was full and good. It made me feel like a great christian to be able to do so many things.
But all of that changed dramatically a couple of years ago. I knew that I wasn't able to do as much. I knew that there were things that made me really tired. I knew that I was feeling more and more pain, especially when I tried to sleep. I knew that something was happening and I knew I didn't like it.
No longer can I do the things that I once use to do. It is hard to make any commitments because I never know when I am going to have a bad attack. My life has changed tremendously. I had to resign from my beloved job because I was in so much pain every afternoon and would have to sleep a lot. I had to give up teaching Sunday school. I can't be consistent in attending choir practice. But it's okay!
I can still serve the LORD every day. Prayer has increased. Bible study is sweet. Being with my family is a daily blessing. I can still be a part of choir when I feel good. I can work with my husband in our Bible institute. I can help my daughter with so much more. I get to go to water aerobics with my sister. And so much more.
Yes, "normal" is a blessing.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010


I was officially diagnosed with fibromyalgia last year. It is very hard to accept this condition. I am not the person I use to be nor the person that I wish I could be. It has changed my life in ways that I never thought possible.
There are very few days when I am not in pain. When I do feel good, I want to do all of the things that I usually cannot do. That ends up being a really bad decision. Within 48 hours I will be in the worse conditions. I have to just sleep and sleep.
In my "normal" life I was a very active person who loved to keep busy. Sitting around was one of the things I just didn't do. However, over the last year and three months, I have to sit around more and more because I just don't have the strength nor ability to do the things I desire. It is very frustrating.
God has used so many things in my life to teach me and change me to be more like Christ. So far, fibromyalgia hasn't "blessed" me at all. It is very hard for me to not get angry and discouraged. Perhaps that is what God is trying to do through this illness...teach me true contentment and gratitude.
In every situation I try to find the truth and the blessing, but in this circumstance it has been extremely hard. I trust in the LORD and know that He is sovereign. May His will be done.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Vacation Photos

My family was blessed to be able to spend nine days in sunny Florida in early March. We have wanted to go there for many years and it justed seemed that the Lord said it was finally time for us to go. I was born there and lived in the house that my parents built until I was two years old. I haven't been back since and so wanted to see where my life began. I also wanted Bekah to be able to see all of the cool aeronautical things in the nornthern part of the state. We saw so much history and beauty of God's creations. The thing I liked the best was that it was sunny every day. It may have been cold at times, but it was always sunny. Ecclesiastes 11:7, "Truly the light is sweet, and a pleasant thing it is for the eyes to behold the sun:" No one knows that verse is true like a western Washitonian.

My parents took me to church here from the time I was just a few days old, until we moved. This is the First Baptist Church of Palatka, Florida.

I love this cross that stands on the bay of Saint Augustine, Florida.

Bekah and I are standing under a saturn 5 rocket like the ones that took men to the moon.

This is me pretending to be a mercury astronaut.

Trials and Tribulations

I don't know who it was that said, "The only thing you can count on, are death and taxes." I would like to add, that you can also count on trials and tribulations. They are just a normal part of life.
Last year, we seemed to go through more than our fair share of trials and tribulations. Some of them were so hard that I don't know how we survived...other than the mighty grace of God. There were times when I was ready to scream and run away, especially when there was more than one to deal with at a time. Much prayer and perserverance brought us through each one with victory. When the year ended, I was one very happy woman.
This year has started off extremely calm and that has been such a blessing. We were able to fully enjoy our vacation knowing that nothing was "hanging over our heads." But then the vacation ended and so did the calm. When the mail resumed, so did the trials and tribulations.
The difference this year, is that I don't feel so overwhelmed. The Bible says, "Tribulation worketh patience; And patience, experience; and experience, hope:" Romans 5:3b-4. The Lord Jesus also said that in this world we will have tribulations. God's Word has given me peace that this trial (which is a literal trial) will work out according to His will.
So, I don't dread trials and tribulations this year like I did last year. The difference is the blessings of the Lord.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Please Reply

I hate those things that want you to reply. I don't know why, I just do. So, why am I asking you to the thing that I hate? Because I really want to know if anyone reads this blog. I would like to do more with this site, if people are reading it. However, if no-one reads this, then I need to figure out if this is God's will. So, if you do read this site and if you have any ideas for expansion, etc. would you please let me know? Otherwise, this site may just go away. Thank you so much, Alice

Monday, March 8, 2010

My birth state

Many years ago, I was born in the state of Florida. When I was two years old, we left and moved far, far away. Winding up in the state of Washington. For many years I have wanted to go back to Florida. It never seemed the right time, until early this year. I was looking at my email and found some good priced tickets. After prayer and consultation with my beloved, it just seemed that it was the right time to go. After a wonderful nine days of vacation, it is hard to believe that it is already time to go back home to Washington. There is a part of me that just wants to stay here and enjoy the sunshine. But there is another part of me that just can't wait to get back home to all that is familiar.
I am so thankful to the LORD for allowing the three of us to have this blessed vacation.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

For Whatever It Takes

"...For whatever it takes fo my will to break...I'll trade comfort for draw closer to you, Lord...that's what I am willing to do..." (artist unknown)
It was 30 yeast ago this last November, that I first heard the song above. (I just pulled a few lines that mean the most to me.) It was on a Sunday morning and I was sitting alone in the church we attended in San Diego. My husband of four months was on duty and couldn't be with me. It was the first time that I had been so far away from my home and my family and to be alone in such a huge city was a bit scary. It was also the first trimester of an unplanned and suprised pregnancy. I was feeling a bit lonely and sorry for myself, but I was determined to be in church. And so it was that I heard the song.
The music director's wife sang this song as a solo and the words reached deep into my mind. I couldn't believe that anyone could honestly sing this song and these words without meaning it completely. The conviction I saw on the soloist's face told me that she meant every word of surrender that she sang. I never thought that I could ever do that. I had always been in control of my life. I had only surrendered my will when forced to do so or when I thought there would be an advantage to doing so.
As the years passed, the song never left my heart. Pain and trials filled my life and I allowed it to turn into anger, hatred, and bitterness. My world became a small, hard, and dark shell of resistance and depression. I did not want to let anyone or anything into my little world because I trusted only myself. I figured that I was safe, but I was so wrong.
Finally, in desperation, I cried out to the LORD for freedom. It took months of prayer and confession of sin. The Holy Spirit began to shine His light around my darkened soul. He firmly, but lovingly showed me sin after sin after sin. As I confessed and repented of each one, the layers of my shell crumbled. God Almighty was cleansing me and creating something beyond my human ability. At last I became able to sing that song with all my heart. I was able to fully surrender and trust in the Lord.
However, over the couple of years, I have gone through more trials and have given into discouragement and frustration. Each time I went through a trial it got easier and easier to fall into sin once again. These last few months have been some of the worst. My fibromyalgia had gotten so bad that I had to resign the job that I loved so much. The pain and frustration had taken hold on my body and soul.
Then, last week, after 30 years, I heard the song sung once again. This time it was sung in my home church by the preacher and two of his daughters. And once again, the song reached into my heart. Afterwards, it was like the Holy Spirit said to me, "Well, are you willing to surrender once again? You already have traded comfort for pain whether you wanted to or not. But are you willing to surrender your will?" With fresh tears, I realized my sinfulness and repented then and there.
With all my heart I can again say to the Lord, "Whatever it takes...that's what I am willing to be more like you, Lord." I do surrender all to Jesus.