What are you waiting for?

Are you waiting for something? A fulfillment of a dream or goal? A new relationship or financial opportunity? A solution to a difficult problem or help for challenging circumstances? Are you waiting for things to change to give you something you do not have in your life or free you from something you do not want in your life? What do you do while you are waiting?


Waiting is usually not a pleasant activity for people. We hate waiting in lines, in offices and airports, in traffic, for a needed package to arrive. We often get aggravated, impatient, sometimes worried or even depressed. While waiting we usually have less control, or at least it seems that way. When things are moving, we feel action taking us towards a goal, moving towards something we want or need or to the experience of something better than where we are or have been.

Our culture wants us to keep moving, take the next step, achieve the next goal. Waiting seems to be counterproductive and an obstacle to success and prosperity. I always feel better when things are moving. I have the perception of getting somewhere, anywhere. The times I have had to wait have been brutal. Having chronic illness for almost 3 decades kept me waiting in doctors’ offices a lot and waiting for the next alternative approach to diminish my symptoms, to give me relief from unbearable pain, fatigue and limiting immobility. While my health deteriorated I grew weary of waiting for some improvement or just not to get worse. During difficult times while alone I grew depressed waiting for a phone call or text from busy friends who had lot of things to keep moving towards. I found myself homebound alone for months waiting for something to change. It became almost unbearable. 

I had practiced acceptance for many years to improve the experience of having chronic illness. I learned to focus on gratitude for the things I had instead of focusing on my pain and immobility. When total isolation set in, it moved to another level more difficult than anything I had known. Death seemed welcomed, even attractive, like the early days of my diagnoses that told me I had no hope for anything but deterioration of my condition and worsening intolerable symptoms. 

Fortunately I was in a study of the books of the bible written by Moses about the struggling of the Israelites for 40 years in the desert waiting to get to the land promised for their nation which had been set free from the bondage of slavery in Egypt. They struggled along the way grumbling and complaining about what they wanted that they did not have. All their needs were met but not their wants. There were stories of death from rebellion and stories of mercy and healing, even abundance of food and fresh flowing water, with clothing and shoes that never wore out. They followed a cloud by day and a fire by night representing the presence of God leading them to start, move, stop and wait. Today we have the opportunity to have the presence of God through the Holy Spirit within us similarly leading us to start, move, stop and wait. 

Over many years of waiting, I had learned how to listen to God while studying the bible. It works for innumerable people around the world since the times of ancient rabbis practicing meditating on the Word of God. Meditation is reflection, reading, praying for inspiration and listening in the mind, heart and spirit. There was a part of my study where God revealed the Israelites were being prepared to learn to follow and have faith in God to prepare them to conquer the Canaanites and take possession of the land they were promised. They could not do it on their own. They needed to listen and follow God’s wisdom, direction, timing and power. Otherwise they would have been destroyed in their first battle. 

 I heard God speaking to me  from that passage. I had always been self or other directed, but not directed by God. I believed in God, loved God and wanted to obey God in morals but not in leading me day by day through my life. For many reasons I did not think it God’s job to lead me or that I could follow if He did, or that I did not want to go wherever God might be leading me. I only surrendered when I was in crisis with no other options like I was at the time I was all alone with my condition worsening. I turned it over completely without complaining or any expectations of what the result might be and God lifted me out with a miracle as had happened several times before in my life, enough to make me believe more than ever that God could and would lead me to good things.

Through this revelation from my bible study, I found acceptance of circumstances I judged unfair, oppressive, beyond my tolerance. Since that time, I have been learning to follow God more closely like the Israelites had to do every day, accepting all things that I cannot change and praying for wisdom through prayer, quiet time with God and meditation and study of the Bible, letting the Holy Spirit guide me like the cloud by day and the fire by night. My life has slowly improved, picking up speed as my faith grows and my ability to keep following and trusting in God’s love and goodness towards me when I am waiting. 

My life took a big turn the last few months as I moved ahead more rapidly with health improvement, mobility and healing. I loved the pace I was moving at. I started this blog and website to share everything I have learned along the long journey I have traveled to a life of much peace, joy and fulfillment, even if things are not going the way I would want or circumstances get painful or challenging. 

The last few days I was hit with some unexpected painful experiences. I wanted to bounce back right away and keep moving. But God had me waiting and I had nothing to write on my blog. I am still learning to wait when I need to and do the things that I think are not as rewarding or as important in my mind as writing this blog. But along the way I see I am still in ‘training’ to be victorious in whatever battles I might face and to help others to face their own challenges and battles while following and trusting God to lead when and how to move.

Thank you for liking, any comments and for following my blog. If you follow, you will get emails whenever I post. If you have any subjects or questions you would like me to consider in my blog, or, suggestions for resources I will be developing, add a comment for others to like, or send your comments through my contact page with more explanation. You can also request prayers on my contact page. You can also follow or connect with me on Twitter, Instagram or my Facebook page with links here. I keep all correspondence by email and direct messaging confidential. 

Searching for truth?


Are you searching for truth? What is truth? Is truth relative, changing depending on the situation and circumstances? Truth is defined as: “that which is true or in accordance with fact or reality; a fact or belief that is accepted as true.” So how do we find what is true? How do we learn or choose what to believe? How do we define reality with so many different perspectives and viewpoints? 

As a child, I was threatened if I thought outside the box of ‘truth’ I was given by those around me. Some threats came from my family members, all seemingly bigger and stronger than me. Often threats came with bodily harm and abuse. Some threats came from teachers with shame and punishments. Other threats came from my church with eternal damnation. I learned what I believed to be truth by fear. 

As I got older I still tended not to think for myself. I learned to gather a consensus from people I hung around or respected, especially those who had the most confidence in themselves, seemingly successful or who considered themselves infallible and experts in everything. I felt safer connecting and agreeing with these kind of people because I had learned through childhood messages to believe I could never be right or find the truth myself. I lost the capacity of discernment for myself. These messages were repeatedly confirmed into early adulthood by the type of people towards whom I tended to gravitate: people who considered themselves experts in everything, did not like anyone who disagreed with them, and were certain to speak their mind about everything and everybody. I felt the safest with people who firmly believed their own truth no matter what anyone else said. 

As my life fell apart I kept searching for more and more experts. I built a huge library of books and collected almost 20 medical specialists. Today there are a multitude of experts given the internet, cable TV channels, millions of websites, books, blogs, free PDF’s, videos, e-books and social media networks. I gathered these information sources like a squirrel gathering nuts. Often the pieces of truth disagreed which only caused confusion. Some advice worked and others made things worse. I got lost in a web of information I could not wade through. Ultimately my life got much worse than I imagined it could. For most of my life I traveled through a long dark tunnel from a very dark childhood with only glimpses of light along the way. Some of those glimpses of false lights turned into trains coming fast towards me for destruction. 

Then I found the truth of Jesus Christ, the Bible and the Holy Spirit. For the first time I was finding the truth and light for my path, healing for my heart, mind and body, and wisdom for decisions that daily amaze me. As I studied the bible with the help of the Holy Spirit given me through a relationship with Jesus Christ, I found I was learning the truth but not just for head knowledge. It started changing my life and changing me. I invite you on a journey to discover what this might mean for you and your life. I will be sharing my experiences here to help you on your way, including some resources explaining methods and simple practices that can help you become your own discerner of truth that might be offered by the multiple sources that come your way.

Pilate asked Jesus: ‘what is the truth?” when Jesus said he came to testify to the truth (John 18:37-38). Jesus had said that God’s Word is truth (John 17:17), that the Holy Spirit leads us into all truth (John 16:3) and that he is the truth (John 14:6). In that same bible book, John said that truth came through Jesus Christ (John 1:17). He wrote his book so that people would come to know and believe in Jesus and find a better life. The gospel of John is a wonderful book of the bible. It is written not only as a historical record but with spiritual interpretation. You can join a study of John’s gospel starting this week with Bible Study Fellowship, an international organization offering bible study groups around the world. Their link is

    https://www.bsfinternational.org/locate-a-class1  

Thank you for liking, any comments and for following my blog. If you follow, you will get emails whenever I post. If you have any subjects or questions you would like me to consider in my blog, or, suggestions for resources I will be developing, add a comment for others to like, or send your comments through my contact page with more explanation. You can also request prayers on my contact page. I keep all email correspondence confidential.

How do you choose?

How do you make choices? Do you do a lot of research, consult experts, Google or ask your friends? I mentioned this in my last post on finding truth. Discernment is the ability to judge well about something: truth, choices, solutions, direction. To judge is to form an opinion or conclusion about (something). In a courtroom evidence and opinions are presented from which a judge or jury are to decide what is truth that can be relied on without a reasonable doubt. When there is conflicting testimony it makes it almost impossible to decide. It certainly causes confusion. Confusion is a lack of understanding, uncertainty; the state of being bewildered or unclear in one’s mind about something. Having too much information leads to much confusion.

Con-Fusion. Fusion is the process or result of joining two or more things together to form a single entity. Con is an instance of deception. Deception is an act of making someone believe something that is not true : the act of deceiving someone. When information does not come together to form an answer, they cause a deception of what is truth, even if not intended. Therefore, in evaluating all the many sources of information we have we are likely to be a victim of a ‘con’. 


How do you make decisions with so much information, often conflicting and leading to differing choices? I used to find it very hard to make decisions or I would just plow ahead (Just Do It) without any research following something or somebody who made a recommendation. Sometimes it was a feeling or just the desire to avoid the consequences of waiting, or to avoid the confusion or conflict erupting from finding more information to wade through. These rapid choices without any reflection most often led to mistakes, some with heavy costs.

We have to make everyday choices in context. Context include the circumstances that form the setting for an event, statement, or idea, and in terms of which it can be fully understood and assessed. I propose that any choice we face has a context including much we can never establish or discern, data outside the realm of our human minds or even the most sophisticated computer. Every moment new pieces of information and events occur. As we move forward that is multiplied beyond comprehension. But I believe there is someone who has the ability and has all information about everything and everyone, past, present and future. That someone is God. 

As I learn to trust God, who promises wisdom and direction, as evidenced through a multitude of witnesses of His actions and words throughout History, I find I am directed along the right path. I often do not see it as I am moving along, but usually I can look back and see the places where I followed and it took me directly to the right choices. The more I trust, the faster I experience the direction. But it is not an easy task for most of us who want to be self motivated and self directed to our self determined destinations. 

Those witnesses of God’s actions and words are found most cohesive for many throughout centuries in the Bible. Taken as a whole, the testimonies are not conflicting in their conclusions and in evidencing the ‘TRUTH”. And there is the direction of a teacher, the Holy Spirit, promised by Jesus Christ to lead us in learning and remembering these truths as we need them. This is increasingly my experience as I faithfully study the Bible under the leadership of the Holy Spirit. 

The Bible contains text. You can take the text and use it to support many things as many different teachers do. But as I heard Creflo Dollar say yesterday, “If you take the text out of context, all that is left is a ‘con’ (a deception)”. Don’t be the victim of a con. Do your own bible study under the right teacher, the Holy Spirit, through a close relationship with God in Jesus Christ. Listening to good teachers is helpful but the Holy Spirit will confirm the truth that you hear from the best teachers for your life, your current circumstances and your everyday life choices. I find good teachers will encourage you to do your own individual study and not just listen to them. As you follow the Holy Spirit, you will find over time that more things than you would wish for or imagine can be yours every day!

Thank you for liking, any comments and for following my blog. If you follow, you will get emails whenever I post. If you have any subjects or questions you would like me to consider in my blog, or, suggestions for resources I will be developing, add a comment for others to like, or send your comments through my contact page with more explanation. You can also request prayers on my contact page. I keep all email correspondence confidential.    

My prayer for YOU!


Ephesians 1:17-19 “God of our Lord Jesus the Anointed, Father of Glory: I call out to You on behalf of Your people. Give them minds ready to receive wisdom and revelation so they will truly know You. Open the eyes of their hearts, and let the light of Your truth flood in. Shine Your light on the hope You are calling them to embrace. Reveal to them the glorious riches You are preparing as their inheritance. Let them see the full extent of Your power that is at work in those of us who believe, and may it be done according to Your might and power. ”

AMEN

Replace the words ‘their’ & ‘them’ with ‘mine’ & ‘me’ and make this prayer your own. I challenge you to try praying this every day for a month or more and watch what happens! Believe and receive! Trust in God’s goodness, power and love for you or just be open to find more!  

Matthew 7:7-8 “Now Jesus returns to prayer, an important and sometimes difficult topic. Here He gives the very essence of prayer. ‘Just ask and it will be given to you; seek after it and you will find. Continue to knock and the door will be opened for you. All who ask receive. Those who seek, find what they seek. And he who knocks, will have the door opened. ‘ ”

What Are You Thinking – Part 2

In my post yesterday I discussed how our thinking impacts our body, emotions, health and even our future. It has been known for a long time that what we think sets up parameters in our minds to be open to find and experience what we expect, good or bad, based on our thinking (self fulfilled prophecies). Practicing what I mentioned in my post yesterday with bible study over many years has had a dramatic impact on my life. It did not take very long for me to start seeing the changes which seemed amazing to me after trying so many other avenues. At first I had no clue how my thoughts were impacting my emotions, health or life choices and experiences. I was not even aware of the beliefs that had formed through repeated thinking patterns and how this impacted my perceptions, overall emotions and reactions to every day events. I would wake up with certain emotional states and not even question why. Even if I figured out the connections, I could not break free. 


Now I know I can investigate the thoughts behind the feelings with divine help. I ask God to show me. The answer might not come immediately while different types of thoughts need to be cleared away before getting to a core belief and its underlying cause. It is like a necklace chain that is tied up in little knots you cannot untangle. Trying to untangle the wrong area of the chain in the wrong sequence makes the knots tighter. Or like a maze, you can feel like you are getting somewhere but end up hitting a dead end and needing to retrace your steps.


The process can be painful if old events, especially trauma, are involved. It helps to share this with a trusted friend or counselor who understands the process, especially if they have similar beliefs about God and Christ. I was in therapy for many years before discovering the power of relying on the Great Physician to help me with this process with the loving support of a Christian counselor. Many counsellors are outcome oriented and I found it is helpful to be process oriented, leaving the direction of the process to be guided by our selves as we are directed by God in Christ through the Holy Spirit that resides in us. Having goals and strategies can help if we know the right ones to choose, but that can keep us going in circles if we do not unlock the right doors first. It goes back to my first blog post 090516 about direction. The last few years I have supported others through this process and they share they have success not found with previous alternatives. And I know many who have experienced this process with bible study learning to listen to the Spirit speaking within. Having taken many (paid) years of study with several theology and bible schools I have found the best free international bible study resource that may have a class near you is Bible Study Fellowship which can be found on Facebook or on the web at:  
https://www.bsfinternational.org/locate-a-class1

Proverbs 3:5-6 “Trust in and rely confidently on the Lord with all your heart And do not rely on your own insight or understanding. In all your ways know and acknowledge and recognize Him, And He will make your paths straight and smooth, removing obstacles that block your way. ”
James 1:5-7 “If any of you lacks wisdom to guide you through a decision or circumstance, you are to ask of our benevolent God, who gives to everyone generously and without rebuke or blame, and it will be given to you. But you must ask for wisdom in faith, without doubting God’s willingness to help, for the one who doubts is like a billowing surge of the sea that is blown about and tossed by the wind.”

If you find this helpful, please like and share. I appreciate any feedback on what is helpful or not clear. If you have a specific topic you would like addressed here please ask. You can leave a comment or send a request confidentially on my contact page.

What Are You Thinking?

One of the major influences on our experience of life impacting our emotions, perceptions and even what we might experience in the future, is our thoughts. It has been shown that thoughts impact our brain in ways we previously had not understood. Thoughts can create chemicals and enzymes in the brain depending on their nature. Repeated patterns of thinking are shown to grow physical structures in the brain that can limit the kind of thinking we tend towards every day. Some of these chemicals and enzymes impact various parts of the neurological and immune systems and there is still much unknown about what other systems or diseases in the body and brain might be affected. There is a lot of research that stress is a major factor leading to many killer diseases and the link between stress and our thinking is obvious.

Do you think about what you are thinking? Many of us, as I had in the past, believe we have no real control over our thoughts, which seem to fall into our heads and in reaction to various situations and events. As I started learning to change the way I was thinking, my reactions to situations, events and stress changed and I found I was filled with more peace and calm despite challenging circumstances. I used to believe I had no control over my emotions either until I started changing the way I was thinking and my emotions and emotional reactions to situations changed. 

I became aware of my thinking and unconscious thoughts through the practice of contemplative meditation whereby a person sits in silence and observes what thoughts arise. Have you ever noticed getting great ideas in the shower or while relaxing on a beach? The brain naturally uses quiet time to bring up unresolved issues, problems and events in an effort to solve and resolve what has not been released. Even during sleep the brain uses dreams to do the same thing. But the brain also needs to rest. Contemplative meditation helped me learn to let go of needing to resolve these thoughts temporarily in order to rest the brain and the body.

Recent research shows that thinking patterns form, blocking our ability to change how we think by ‘hard coding’ these patterns with chemicals and enzymes. Trauma releases even more substances that reinforce this process, creating triggers that start the thinking patterns to repeat like programmed loops in our brains. There are ways to disrupt this with affirmations and finding contradictory thoughts to fight the patterns we want to change. But even with that, I had some resistant thoughts stemming from early childhood experiences that had been repeated continually over my lifetime and were hard to release. 

Then I discovered the power of using bible truths to release those thoughts and patterns. Somehow, mysteriously, the truth we learn through studying the bible seems to have more power than any other words we might use. I had heard this belief and doubted, but trying it, it actually has worked. The mystery is that there is another force behind the words that comes from God through Christ and the Holy Spirit, who knows just the right order to address these thoughts to untangle the many systems tied up together like knots in the brain. Sounds like divine brain surgery to me. But it works, not by my might or intelligence or analysis, but by listening to what God is speaking to me while I study the bible as frequently as I can.

Now I ask God every day to watch over my thoughts and point out to me the ones that need changing, like putting my streams of conscious and unconscious (hidden) thoughts through a kind of security check to see what should be contraband and not allowed to continue journeying through my life, like a TSA check point at the airport. No unwanted or hidden contraband thoughts are allowed to continue the journey of my life, thanks to the nudging and growing awareness provided through my relationship with God in Christ under the guidance of the Holy Spirit, given us to lead us into all truth and remind us of what we have learned when we need. 

John 14:26, 16:13 “The Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, will guide you into all the truth, (&) will teach you all things. He will help you remember everything taught to you.”

Which Way Are You Going?


Are you headed in the right direction? How do you know? Especially when faced with obstacles, choices, difficult circumstances and situations, how do you navigate through your life to find the best path? In my life I have had incredible difficulties and challenges seemingly insurmountable or even survivable. You can read my bio on the about page to find a summary. Given my childhood, I learned to survive by being alert, aware, analytical and resourceful, among other less healthy patterns. Around age 5 a near death experience caused me to believe in God who became a constant companion, with no other person in my life I could trust not to hurt me. 

As my difficult circumstances continued into adolescence, I lost that trust and faith. I decided to seek wisdom from the world and whoever I found willing to give advice. We can always find lots of people to give us advice and a lot of it is good. But how do we judge for ourselves which advice is good for us at any particular moment in any particular situation? Do we search for good reviews? Have those reviews always turned out to be best for us? Each of us has an individual unique path with lots of turns that cannot be fathomed by any amount of analysis, especially given the amount of opposing and confusing information now available. There is not enough time to research and decide. But I used to try. Looking back, some turned out good, but many turned out worse for me, or at least wasted time and money until the next solution came along. I spent years and all my money searching and trying anything that seemed ‘helpful’ or had a good recommendation. Ultimately given serious health issues without any available solutions, I turned back to God for help, following various spiritual practices and eventually teaching them to others. I gained some temporary peace but no permanent solutions, and when things worsened the peace disappeared. 

One day a friend gave me a tape of a lecture on a bible passage, Proverbs 3:5-6 (shown below). I listened and my heart lit up. It talked about letting go of our self reliance and analysis and trusting God to lead us and make our path straight, removing obstacles. That started my journey into the bible, a book I owned but never opened or was taught to use through 12 years of Christian school. The next few years were like doors and windows being opened in my mind and eventually in my heart, as I gained wisdom and experienced solutions and direction for impossible and challenging circumstances in ways I could not explain except to credit God. I realized through experience that only God has all the information needed to direct our choices and lead us on a path that connects us with the resources we need along the way. Only God knows everything about us and our past, every possible aspect of our circumstances, the results of every possible choice we could make, and information about the entire world over all moments of time. 

The experiences became more dramatic, undeniable, and, in some cases, miraculous, the more I learned to trust and follow God, as the bible verse says. My life became a journey of experiencing God’s best direction and results for my life’s choices, healing of my body, recovery from financial loss, the permanent transformation of my mind and personality and the deepening of my relationship with God in Christ, all with the help of the Holy Spirit, promised by Jesus for those very purposes. Perhaps this verse will speak to you. 

Proverbs 3:5-6 “Trust in and rely confidently on the Lord with all your heart. And do not rely on your own insight or understanding. In all your ways know and acknowledge and recognize Him, And He will make your paths straight and smooth, removing obstacles that block your way. ”


Thank you for liking and following my blog. If you have any subjects or questions you would like me to consider in my blog, add a comment for others to like or send them through my contact page with more explanation. I keep all email correspondence confidential. 

What are you laboring for?

On this Labor Day in the United States, I was reflecting on labor. I am thankful that my health has improved so much from when a few weeks and months ago, I could hardly labor at all. I am thanking God for healing when doctors and medications could not work. I have labored in seeking help in any way I could, with doctors, medications, alternative healing techniques and trying all kinds of remedies, while my health worsened over the last few years, worse than it had been for a long time, being told a few years ago my doctor did not think I would survive a simple infection that should have cleared up in a month. 

More than 25 years ago I was diagnosed with a chronic illness coming from childhood trauma to my brain and neurological system which had deteriorated the various systems in my body. I am told there is no cure since it came from brain damage and that part of the brain is inoperable. I was told I would eventually be in a wheel chair for life. My primary care physician said she was so sorry because although I would want to die, the condition would not kill me, especially if I sought emergency care when having seizures which could come unexpectedly at any time, shutting down various neurological signals that keep me breathing, standing, my heart beating, my body moving and fighting off toxins and disease that normal neurological and immune systems do naturally, automatically. 

I turned to spirituality and labored to find tools and techniques to ease pain, alleviate symptoms and developed prayer practices to get closer to God, the Great Physician and Healer. I had some successes along the way but ultimately disabling symptoms would return and got worse the last few years, no matter what I labored to do. Medical expenses had emptied all my savings and retirement funds and put me in tremendous debt I could not manage month to month without moving balances around to new credit cards and cutting all unnecessary expenses. Just when I thought I would lose my home heavily mortgaged, avenues of funding and free resources would appear, including free plumbing and roof repair. I had exhausted all the avenues open to me. But I continued to labor to keep alive, even though I really wanted to die. One by one people left my life, a life that moved increasingly to being homebound and immobile. My solitude and isolation increased. But I continued to labor on to find a purpose for still being alive. I studied a lot about healing. I learned more about what it means to follow Christ. It was not about labor or doing things to be good, to labor at spiritual practices and devotions, or even long periods of prayer. But it did mean learning about God and what we have in Christ. It did mean slowly but increasingly submitting my life to God in Christ by cooperating with the Holy Spirit.

The rest of the story will be revealed over time, perhaps in a book. The bottom line is I learned that life and healing, whatever you might define as happiness, success, prosperity and fulfillment, do not just come from labor, planning, research, determination and faith. Abundant life and prosperity are offered as gifts through what God offers out of His love for all people. It comes from what Jesus Christ has done to give us this gift of grace, eternal life and salvation, which defined in the Greek original word, SOZO, means prosperity in all areas of our lives, now and eternally. It is received as a gift, not by Laboring to earn it or manifest it in our own strength, intelligence or devices. Just like money deposited in our bank account, we just have to make withdrawals. We have to prove our identity as defined in Christ by faith, which is not even anything we work to have. It is a gift and a mystery, a marvelous mystery that only manifests when we turn it all over and come to the giver of the gift through the avenue the giver chooses, Jesus Christ, following him as a disciple, and then the road becomes narrow but ultimately easier and surer than any other road we might choose on our own or by following the advice of others. 

Matthew 11:28-30 “Come to Me, all who are weary and heavily burdened by labors that provide no peace, and I will give you rest refreshing your souls with salvation. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me following Me as My disciple, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest, renewal, and blessed quiet for your souls. For My yoke is easy to bear and My burden is light.”