7 Staples: Soul Food for Stressful Seasons

Strained, stressed, and sweaty, I was standing on the August-hot sidewalk, trying to maintain a cell connection with the doctor. The call had already dropped twice . . . this was the straw that broke the camel’s back. The events of that summer were not what we’d expected!

Photo by Bureau of Land Management [CC-BY-SA-2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Expectations vs. Reality

Sometimes our expectations and plans don’t cooperate with life!

The first week of summer, my husband felt a recurring pain in his upper back. He didn’t worry about it until his left arm and hand began to go numb—symptoms of a heart attack, which is usually a game changer. After several tests and appointments, my husband was diagnosed with a herniated disc, which, thankfully, was treatable. We tried all kinds of treatments. Our medicine cabinet looked like a pharmaceutical vending machine, the smell of natural oils rubbed on his back filled the house; we went global in an attempt to find healing relief.

Summer became intense, juggling my husband’s crippling pain, doctor appointments, and hospital tests; my son Jon’s summer schedule; our work; my daughter’s new engagement and wedding plans; and our three older kids’ work and travel schedules. Caught up in trying to control it all, I neglected to connect with the Lord, the one who controls it all anyway. I often forget that quiet stillness with my Savior calms my soul; thus it calms life too.

Driving home, I asked the Lord for His grace and help. I kid you not, before I arrived home, this text came through on my phone:

The wonderful news is that My hand touches you, behind and before, protectively! You literally can’t hide from Me—not an action, a thought, an idea, or feeling. I made you wonderful and know every one of your days. You are extremely valuable and precious to Me! I think of you constantly, and when you wake up, I am still with you. Sweet daughter, let Me lead you today. I am your up close and personable God! Full of grace! I go out of My way to meet you! My name is the LORD/Yahweh, the One who hears your cries and comes to save, deliver, and restore! I love you.

My friend had no idea what was happening in our home, but God did. I was quickly reminded of a profound practice in cultivating intimacy with our God: lectio divina (a Latin phrase meaning “divine reading”). Lectio divina is the practice of reading a passage of Scripture, pausing to prayerfully reflect on each word, and allowing the Holy Spirit to minister truth through the process of contemplation.

Rarely does life cooperate with our expectations. In our frustration, we become scattered and stressed; being still is often the last thing we think of doing. But our souls need to be fed first; from there, God strengthens us to do what we cannot do on our own.

Let Me Hear from You

I encourage you to pick one or two of these passages, sit with them in quietness, and feed your hurried soul for a few moments. A full soul is a happy soul; let me know what filled you with peace this next week.

You can leave a comment by clicking here.

For Peace:
Exodus 14:14 “The LORD himself will fight for you. Just stay calm.”
For Strength:
Habakkuk 3:19 The Sovereign LORD is my strength!
For Justice:
Lamentations 3:59 You have seen the wrong they have done to me, LORD. Be my judge, and prove me right.
For Despair:
Psalm 42:5–6 Why am I discouraged? Why is my heart so sad? I will put my hope in God! I will praise him again—my Savior and my God!
For Trust:
Isaiah 26:4 Trust in the LORD always, for the LORD GOD is the eternal Rock.
For Trials:
1 Peter 1:6–7 So be truly glad. There is wonderful joy ahead, even though you have to endure many trials for a little while. These trials will show that your faith is genuine.
For Care:
Romans 8:38 And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love.


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128 thoughts on “7 Staples: Soul Food for Stressful Seasons

  1. Sandra,
    As you wait, the more important issue is this thing with your mother. First, my question is (rhetorically speaking), why is your dad “running her errands”? Meaning, if there is a compromise in relationship, the two that have the conflict need to talk; otherwise it’s called a triangle…NEVER WORKS! If mother is worried or concerned, then mother needs to be a ‘big girl’ and talk with YOU about it…not behind your back. Additionally, how trustworthy is father to tell the truth? I have no idea but wonder if father is projecting these emotions and saying they are coming from your mom. Either way, the pattern is unhealthy and leaves you looking and longing for what they cannot give…selfless love and other-focused attention/connection. I believe it’s wonderful that your spirit is in an upheaval about this…you probably passed it over before or played into their pattern of relating. Look at your growth. You are recognizing unhealthy patterns and standing up for yourself…THAT is incredible. So, the next time a family member tells you something about another, you can freely and simply say, “wow, it sounds like they are in a tough place which I can’t do anything about unless they come to me personally”. Until then, we don’t know what the truth really is and you are tired of living with these familial lies. I am so proud of you for recognizing this; for choosing self respect over compromise, for advocating for your life and not placating to others. There is great courage and also great loss in this. You are recognizing how used you have been; that is a sorrow that pierces deeply for which I am so terribly sorry. How I wish you didn’t have to feel the losses. Yet, in the depth of pain, a new and tender mercy will be birthed, grow, and be part of your life and legacy that has not been present in your family history. Breaking the multigenerational ‘sins of the father’ is no easy or simple task; but with Christ, you are able. So proud of you my dear friend. Colleen
    Colleen Swindoll-Thompson

    • Hello Colleen, someone in town who owner of soil and sod and rock store i was talking with as needed some potting soil ,and will need some soil for eroision over leach field so can plant groundcover to help with holding soil after i have gutters up will do this…well we were speaking and what happened with gutter contracter and another contracter, seemingly the two have in common that their businesses were handed to them by generation ownership…and this soil store owner had heard the experience i have had same with other customers and said they get spoiled and have not taken the tradition of integrity and ethics forward……so soil owner said he will only now refer to this individual who does gutters that split off from one of these other gutter contracters that has not gotten back with me again. So I called him and his price may even be a few dollars less than other,he has same information, life time warranty, he will come out and measure tuesday afternoon,calling me first before comes out…i told him i do know i have 99 linear sq feet front and rear with downspouts,small house,and he said is 4.00/sq foot, so 400.00 was what other contracter was to charge….this new contracter told me if I am correct in measurements it is really 96 linear sq.feet totaling measurements i gave him,but he will come out to see. that is where it may be a tad less than other contracter. If I lived more in town it is less like 3.78/linear foot ,as he said living out here he travels further and 4.00/sq foot. He does most jobs in town , i am about 15 miles from center of the town near my town,same county, where he works from.
      I wanted let you know ,I am prepared now to go with this fellow if all flows and do not hear from other contracter,and same price, I am GRATEFUl for this. as most other quotes i had were 600ish.
      I want to share with you some moments in nature that are beautiful to observe at home …. i have a deer family living in the woods behind my home,they just came out again a momma,and two fawns, usually i see in morning,now this afternoon they all together grazing foliage..I have also seen a fox,same one twice since here.
      Have a really good evening,
      Thank you for being such a wonderful lady! a woman of Faith, Wisdom and Grace!

      • Sandra,
        Unbelievable!!! Isn’t it nice to know the problems had nothing to do with you! When a person has been guilted, shamed, or made to believe anything that goes wrong is there fault; it’s such a hard habit to change that way of thinking. I assume you probably asked yourself a time or two… “What is wrong with me or how I am communicating”; now you know it wasn’t you at all! That is fabulous and relieving! Sounds like you are in better spirits…celebrate those moments!

        • Thank You Colleen! for kind thoughts and yes I did ask myself several times, was it because of my anxiety, neediness, being a woman maybe ,easy to take advantage of, so many thoughts had and have passed through my mind with why contracters either way overpriced or lack of communication,integrity,and ethics…..so it is seeing that this contracter did the same to my Reiki Master in sense of lacking integrity of word spoken to each other and to me to follow through…..it is quite remarkable for me to have seen the truth in this and to help me with relief you speak of as it is truly not about me…I walked today for first time in probably a good week…it was superb.nature everywhere, God’s glory in His creation that I am so fond of and cherish in my presence….I enjoyed it and weather a delight,high 78 i think and sunshine toasty warm.Hope you and your day is good and weather enjoybalbe too…I thought at park while walking that I am ready to open to Psalm and meditate on Psalms as you had suggested….one of the Meetup groups is tonite but 50 minute drive and begins 7pm, alot of farm land in between and not so great area to be single female driving at nite esp coming back late,so Reiki Master suggested not safe and I am kind of bummed,I prayed to God during walk to lead me to what group is suitable and available during light hours,maybe weekend…I am going to ask a girl that works at organic grocery store that seems to connect with me,and she has asked me to call her in past.She works in supplement /wellness section of store and I know she has a boyfriend,her birthday is two days after mine and I think she is my age too…I may ask her to meeet me on her break for coffee,and /or something like this casual short time to visit. I am going to celebrate as you say these moments my mind is much more idle, lonliness still but different than before where the walk and sunshine in park and closeness I am seeking with God seem to fulfill me today. I keep praying to fill me with compassion, gratitude and JOY,truest of loving relationships and truest of JOY filled Heart and Soul to share with same.
          Thank you for connecting,and take good care…..if I had not mentioned the Goji berry scrub from Bella Organics is so wonderful….i think you will like too.
          Have a Blessed evening, I continue to hold you in prayer for Blessings and Gratitude, you and your family as whole.
          Much Love,

        • Hello Colleen, I hope you and your family are well. I wanted to give you an update, I am somehow surviving and lately not sure exactly why or how ….such a roller coaster of events,etc. I am working toward one contracter to begin in one week, in meantime i had air conditioner serviced for winter today ,and that was all good, I wanted him also to go into crawlspace where i have had alot of noise in morning hours especially and finding when walk into crawlspace much insulation torn at and hanging and pieces on dirt floor in there and torn literally off the duct work. The a/c contracter said for sure it is squirrels and showed me nesting,and said a family living in there. I am getting a trap and try do myself and then others have said in their work they can seal up at cost to me all the gaps,holes where they must have found good access. It is a high crawl space in front and then goes lower toward front of house where they need be on hands and knees to get in there to check ….I also had accepted help from Reiki Master and it always seems something, as I am grateful for the help, I do not know why individuals hold me to an obligation to their needs, or turn cheek on me…..without regard to why I may have not believed appropriate to expect me at whim of last minute and to spend the time where I was not wanting to..I am actually going to say no thank you to help more often for I seem to get “punished”, “abandoned”, “shunned”, “silence treatment” or “not my friend anymore, I am not going to help you”, it is very old for me,and I have boundaries too.I am always surprised for someone that is so gifted in helping others,such high skill level ,with outstanding reputation in work….. I wanted to give you update as I so much wished I had outstanding news to share. My best part of today was the a/c contracter said I am the first of new program offering “premier customers” that need add’l service after winter treatment,which i need new insulation and sealed up in crawl space so I get 10% discount…that is first “premier” status I have had in long while……I do ask please pray for me and my house and for now this mess in crawl space with no more squirrels reaking expensive havoc for me,and potential chewing wires,etc….I hear them in walls,and hopeful they simply just go away with remedies at hand.
          I keep saying I have my Lord Jesus Christ and Heavenly Father so this has to all be alright, it has to be with Jesus in my Heart and SOul.
          Much Love and Gratitude

          • Sandra,
            This is such an encouraging note! Oh my gosh….several things came to light as I read of your recent experiences. First, you are now recognizing what has been happening all along and ACTING upon it in such a healthy way. These behaviors are not new to you or to those who have used you in the past; you are just now healthy enough to RECOGNIZE them, feel the anger of being used and abused (“punished”, “silence treatment”…), and saying NO, this is not going to continue…I am worth so much more than your self-consumed desires or what have you. Secondly, I can’t imagine the ongoing frustration with the home….but for the first time, I thought….this is a “special needs” home….a broken home that needs help to be restored. Like my life with Jon, something new comes up almost daily that I never expected…not one day is the same. This home has been that for you without a doubt. You went into it with the highest of hopes (rightly so), and have been desperate, frustrated, and at times helpless to know what to do. But you have risen to the occasion each time…while it has been entirely difficult, you have not given up. You have chosen to grow in resiliency, determination, and things about your spirit have been revealed like mentioned above…your value, worth, and ability to say NO to wrongful treatment. See, this is why I don’t see my work in caring for other’s as just for ‘special needs’ because all of us in life encounter this theme…expectations, frustrations, revelations, reconciliation (with what is, not with what we wish it would be), and restoration (as Christ comes along side and heals us). It’s a constant theme…it may show up in the form of a different child, dilapidated home, mental and emotional struggles, physical pain, employment struggles, addictions….whatever it may be, the theme and cycle happens to all of us in life. So as you care for your home, think of it as caring for a child in need…as Christ cares for us. This really may not be about the home but about how God is using this home to reveal the reality of our human condition…one of constant need. There may never be an end to the home issues; let’s hope they don’t remain as intense….but there may always be a ‘surprise’ you didn’t expect. Let that remind you that this is how we come to Jesus…always in need of His grace and mercy. Such a perspective helps you through; the challenges take on new meaning. You learn to be more merciful, patient, enduring because that is how Christ is with us. When I have this perspective, I am better able to care for my Jon…he can’t be fixed, he can be helped…and I learn to love more unselfishly in the process. I hope this makes sense to you. It’s not easy or enjoyable; it is freeing and confirming that God is at work in your life bringing restoration and healing. I’m so proud of you, your choices, your growth, your boundaries, and your recognition of truth, and how you stay the course. I hope this provides hope and help my friend. Amazing work is happening even though it feels otherwise. You are amazing. Colleen

          • Hi Colleen
            I did want to say the bond does grow with Jesus for our depth of souls I think by experience struggle pain ….also I will ask God guidance as wildlife worker..if I feel better paying him consult fee come out or if as he said ask by telephone as needed..he is so generous with passion for wildlife res ue I would want pay spmething if poasible and God guides me …if have him come out maybe and pay 80.00at least I will know by exact instruction how to remedy?the air conditioner contracter work to rewrap insulation and seal crawlspace is 600+ dollars so I need follow careful attention.have a good day.weather beautiful here.I do hope sun shining warmth by you as well.Sandra

          • Hello Colleen, I wanted to say that I did hire the generous individual from govt wildlife, he will come out Tues to walk through with me as consultation, the 80.00 fee, and he will show me by example placing hardware cloth(wire mesh) on crawl space vents and he will do complete inspection attic and crawl space and every crevice and show me how they are getting into home and guide me exactly step by step what i will need in material and where need install seal. I did get trap as this is first step and will set it now. He told me place pecans in there,the squirrels love pecans he said. He is out with alot of beaver work…very interesting work.
            I just cried, it was a different cry , usualy I have been crying that feels good and complete and whole ,and this cry feels hard and sad and fearful maybe of this entire situation of repairs,cost ,etc. I will look up fear and try remain calm. I am in good hands with wildlife individual as he so educatinal and gives the time , he will give me all I need to know and more really for knowledge of living in country with woods.
            Have a good evening,

          • Hello Colleen, I hope you are well and your family too. If you enjoy Halloween, please be safe and have fun today and/or tonite with family. Have a wonderful weekend too. I wanted give you a little update and I know you will relate to what I am about to say, I did not want to “jinx” anything, i know that what I do not say I have practiced more than usual of late, let me just say I was observing back crawl space door for long while into evening yesterday with my stray Cat (who I need to still name,she is so sweet and follows me around, very heartwarming cat and I always preferred dogs…) and squirrels do not like cats around, anyway, I found upon observation a squirrel family in pecan and oak tree just over rear of house,and I was told by wildlife specialist by phone that squirrels love pecans,well there was a father,mother and two young squirrels. It was apparent by the father squelling sounds and mother following his calls later as sun set, that they were family (not for certain) because I had just sealed up a hole I found on side of crawl space door had seen just at a different angle,just about 1 1/2 feet above ground level and it was size of squirrel body and smoothed out sides from good use….so I used all kinds of small railroad tie like boards to cover this opening……and trap sat in crawl space with pecans and zero activiy last nite,nothing in crawl space…that is why I am pretty certain this squirrel family is what was living and making big mess in nesting in crawl space. The wild life specialist still coming out Tuesday to help guide me how to seal up professionally and permanently and he will walk into attic ,etc,,complete observation and I will also tell him of bugs and salamanders getting in this summer…..that is what i have not wanted to jinx, i have only found maybe 3 since bombing and all in living room not in kitchen at all…..That i have been thrilled with and as I seal up and gather professional advice these issues very worthwhile for me to eliminate. And I found it an interesting thought that his wife rescues wildlife and nurses with bottle and then when animals ready she releases them safely. My thought was well maybe God delivering me this path so I can voluteer perhaps if maybe with thought if she need help at times or an animal I can help…would that not be one of the most fantastic things ,as much as I like nature so very much and have that connection to taking care of an animal,so comforting and peaceful idea….I will see how consultation goes tues and maybe inquire about this through him.
            I wanted to let you know. I did also read Lamentations last nite, I understand how worn one can feel and still know God is all Loving, somehow someway when you just know He is the only Light one can see, maybe still feel forgotten although heart is always coming to God as we talk to Him and pray.and seek Him. for His comfort. Interesting for me to read.
            Thank you

          • Sandra,
            There is a passage in Matthew 6 which says: “For this reason I say to you, do not be worried about your life, as to what you will eat or what you will drink; nor for your body, as to what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air, that they do not sow, nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not worth much more than they? And who of you by being worried can add a single hour to his life?…(vs. 26-27) Just as you so attentively watched that little animal family, how much more is the Lord watching over you! He is at work, He is providing, and He loves you more than you can imagine. Just wanted to remind you of that. You are a loving, caring person….amazing. Colleen

          • Thank you Colleen again for your wonderful wisdom in post. I will sit with Matthew 6 today and do intend to sit with a Psalm in meditation this afternoon/evening.
            Thank you so much and reminding me how much more the Lord is watching over me truly as He is at work with me and providing and most of all His Love for me, and for all simultaneously is so very Great. Thank you for your kindness,Sandra

          • Hello Colleen, this blog seems keeping me connected,,,,,”Soul Food For Stressful Seasons”…..I need to ask ,not certain yet but my water bill usually 23-26.00, just me solo here as you are aware….bill came in today 99.00…..I contacted rural water company and they are sending out someone to recheck as it could be error. Please I say let this be an error. I see no obvious signs of leak….as I walked today I prayed, I prayed so much love into my heart and soul and for my house too, i stated address and all critters and pests to remain outside a black marker line a foot away from perimeter all way around,and asked essentially for Blessing and protection of me and home and for His Light to shine ever so briliantly into my home restoring me and home,,,,and asked at end of walk in car for Lord to Please hear all my Prayers ,and I opened this envelope and found bill total. I am awaiting word from water company. In meantime, I need ask is God trying to get my attention with all these issues? and what is He wanting of me? to hear?
            If you have an outsiders thought ,I am very open right now to hear….I seem to hear a voice to read His word. I have difficulty understanding alot when reading the Bible, it is so magical in story, very real and true the way you share God word Colleen. I will open Bible and focus on Psalm to meditate as I mentioned earlier, these swings I will remain calm and knowing He is Faithful and as you posted earlier Matthew 6 not to worry as He has and will continue to provide for He is All Loving of me, as to us all.
            With Love and Grace,

          • Sandra,
            I would certainly think this to be a mistake. The water bill that high indicates there must be a leak or incorrect impute on their part to document correctly. Sounds like you have done what you can and just need to wait to hear back from the company. Also, you are used to working so hard in life, achieving high goals…probably higher than typical, that it would be easy to do that with your relationship with Christ. All relationships grow, they ripen, they evolve…it takes time and experiences to grow. Just as our earthly relationships do this, so it is with our Heavenly Father. You may not need to read the Bible so much that it makes you irritated or frustrated. Just ask the Lord what He wants you to do and I bet you will be directed…as I was years ago…either to rest, turn to a passage, sit in silence and wait…whatever it may be, allow it to be enjoyable because relationships are to be enjoyable and valuable. So just sit in His presence and think of it as a warm blanket around you, holding you safely and securely. Let me know what happens with the water bill…that is interesting and honestly, it’s an easy mistake to correct if it’s a leak or computer error. = ) Colleen

          • Thank You Colleen, you and your Dad have a synchronicity between blog and his newsletter and comments via radio….there always seems to be a connection , as the Newsletter today so clearly shared “Waiting for God Yes or No”…..this so much spoke to me as I do “work” so hard to hear what He is saying, and your Dad did speak of this as new Christians do,and also how I have thumbed through the Bible in a way that is looking /seeking His word “to me”, as if that is what He is saying ,and this does not work this way at all, as your Dad touched on in newsletter today. I have found there are those moments in time when I can open up the Bible and yes ,it be exact page of scripture that God has led me to, this is that spontaneous open to one page and it be so clearly His speaking to me to read. Yes, I do “work” too hard at things especially when in a certain frame of mind ,maybe insecurity? lacking trust? feeling alone and needing a connection for comfort….As soon as you have said “….just sit in His presence and think of it as a warm blanket around you, holding you safely and securely.”. I felt that this was exactly what i needed to hear.and I will sit with this as I could feel His presence and embrace and that is what He wanted to say how much I am Loved by Him, honestly it flooded in a comfort that i said to myself, He so Loves me. I will continue to ask for His direction and clarity of self to hear Him. The wildlife consultant did not show or call for appt 4pm….I called and left voicemail, I so much hope he will reschedule and there was a good reason he did not show up…I was looking forward to determining what need do to prevent any other nests of squirrel and have him check attic,etc….oh well ,not today,and God has maybe protected me again for something else to replace this appt???
            Have a good evening,I will let you know about water, I too would believe computer error….I guess my greatest concern was with squirrels in crawl space,they like to chew but I cannot imagine that large of water leak go unnoticable,air condionditioner contracter did not mention anything. I am handing all over to the Lord tonite,,,,and JUST NOW WILDLIFE CONTRACTER CALLED, SO HUNG UP WITH OTHER APPT, HE APOLOGIZED THREE TIMES IN CONVERSATION AND COMING OUT tomorrow…so glad He returned my call, honestly I think he was so busy forgot me? so glad he is the one coming out,so knowledgable.
            Thank you for being there and listening to my process and growth.
            Thank you

          • Sandra,
            What an incredible passing of events. From the time of writing, beginning to end, you had a needed connection. Now take notice of one this…you ended with wondering if he “forgot you” or “was too busy”…these are assumptions that will send your swirling. Bottom line, who knows why, he apologized and made arrangements; let it simply be what he said. No one can know the heart of another; if he has not yet proven to be untrustworthy, then I would suggest you accept the apology and see what comes. If a pattern develops…a lack of follow up or commitment, then it can be addressed. But for today, take the words and let your mind rest. No assuming, no second guessing, no wondering….simply, he said sorry and will come out when he said. Next time, if he shoujld prove to be untrustworthy, you can simply say, “it is hard for me to trust your word since this has happened several times…I will need to have someone I can trust look over these things…if that is you, then please establish a time and date…if not, then I will find one who is trustworthy.” That puts all responsibility on him; it’s his work and reputation. You simply need a trustworthy person who provides this service. I hope this helps as you move forward with other issues…it’s not your fault, no need to assume; just stand your ground and find one you can trust. It will happen. And while you wait, rest your mind in knowing God has you in his hands and will never let you fall. Be blessed tonight my friend. Colleen
            Colleen Swindoll-Thompson

          • Hi Colleen, I did want to mention, i was crying so much last nite, i was frustrated as you say here looking through Bible with wet eyes, and it may have been simply an awareness of scripture when I found easy to read 2 Corithians 4-6 and further , I think it is Paul who speaks .at any rate that was 2 Corinthians 6 I recall that I had not ever read, it was simple to read for me and I was glad to have read this and will like to read more of Paul letter.
            Thank you

          • Sandra,
            Paul the apostle wrote most of the New Testament. His life and letters are extraordinary! 2 Corinthians is his most personal letter; he reveals much of his struggles in life with secure yet candid honesty. I’m so happy you were able to take them in and let them rest in your heart. May they continue to as you rest tonight and in the days ahead. Colleen
            Colleen Swindoll-Thompson

          • Hi Colleen, I know my impatience bubbles over with waiting……as we have spoken so many times that rest ,put some things I can aside to rest, it seems God still wants me to be still as when you stated this about “His presence being like a warm blanket around me, holding me safely and securely”, it was so right and I recalled my hearing Him say be still when had asked earlier and I simply maybe resisted with all need get done and new items needing my attention and not wanting to sit so isolated and get sick and be alone and not meet someone,and then I have my Bday where money seems to be going to repairs rather than to what I was anticipating to do somehting special later December…so much truly happening and God wants me to sit still and wait. I am going to leave this nite with this verse ANd Trust in God that all will be okay, I hand all over to Him and He knows what is coming for me.

            2 Corinthians 5:17 ►

            “Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new”


            2 Corinthians 5:1

            “For we know that if our earthly house of this tabernacle were dissolved, we have a building of God, an house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens”.
            I found i think my most enjoyable reading here in 2 Corinthians. I would love to hear more of 2 Corinthians and will explore reading all.
            Good nite, Good Rest,with Gratitude.
            “a new creature”, Sandra

          • Sandra,
            Here is some good news…most of our disappointments come from unmet expectations. I know you want this birthday, your 50th, to be spectacular….and I would tell the Lord that is your desire. Yet, because of His profound love, He may have another plan that does not include a spectacular 50th but a spectacular something…that is a wonderful anticipation. Knowing that the Lord, the creator of all things and of you, personally knows you and loves you deeply. So let Him know your wishes, keeping your hands open to His will. I hope financials work out; since we came into this world with nothing and leave with nothing, He may be having you look for a new direction…another path that will lead you to greater peace and joy than you could have planned on your own. I pray all works out smoothly. Colleen
            Colleen Swindoll-Thompson

          • Hello Colleen, I prayed this morning on all this you mentioned and I have enjoyed the Love of His blanket of warmth to hold me…..seemingly not wanting to let that go…ever so nurturing and warm. Thank you and I will need wait to see what He has in direction for me?
            Thank you,
            Have a really good day

          • oh well Colleen, when life is difficult one surely cannot believe that others suffer far worse and that God is Faithful…..and that one is not alone squandering with pain and sorrow and thinking /believing is there really a light in all this? I read your Dad newsletter this morning and Yes God is leading, when it seems so much of a wrong turn, it is still He who knows much more than I and there is no understanding because it is He who Leads me/us. I called water company surely as I would like to know as soon as possible if metter reading was error so i can look further if in deed huge leek that would be over three times my usual water bill??? still not likely in my belief but validation is necessary. Well, the clerk who informed me yesterday that a new meter reading would be set ,she is out for today and never put in for a new reading….glad i called. So now men out for today working and most likely will be tomrorow morning when men get order……in meantime I again wait. This waiting has been getting most tiresome. And then my father calls and says my mother is worried she does not hear from me anymore….we really have little to say and she so mean hearted I cannot bear to listen to that evil tongue so i have stayed clear from her, she is not trustworthy either. It has just been only a year she suddenly had a cell phone and “long distance minutes”, prior to that she never picked up my Dads cell phone ,maybe once and she told me she did not have long distance so could not call me, we still never really talked alot. suddenly she thought of me i guess like every other time, it is not for the loving reason you would imagine….usually self interest. I called her last New Years Eve and she was too busy with food to come to phone, i ended up calling her back the day after New Years Day and she was in less than positive spirits….It is hard for me to be in the right space, mind and heart to have to know I am in space to protect myself from the negative energy, so I wait until I feel strong,not depressed, not feeling full of challenge that coping with as I do have a safety boundary as it takes alot for me to not be so sensitive and absorb when boundary lower….just the way it has always been as long as I can remember. I know there is forgiveness, one can forgive but the real magic for me is how to remain safe and protected of self in these encounters,this one is probably the blog dealing with difficult people, although this has alot more emotional attachment. I did call my Dr…I know she fully supports me and to take care of my vulnerable self and give “her/my vulnerable self” whatever it is she needs and not be used or taken advantage of, and it is okay not to call. I know there have been other blogs and Lifespa.com that say give always like the Sun, from someone like me my Dr. has told me that I have given beyond the sun and have been taken very much advantage and there are limits….it is still hard for me to deal with all this and know it is righeous….I no longer say I need be like Joseph, and all the blogs that say this, I disagree for they are speaking from the perspective of someone who may not have experienced the depth of pain and sorrow of another, and come from an entirely different more positive perspective . I need to listen to how God is leading my inner child and this is all I can do for the now. I need do all I can to remain clear enough to gather His direction in most clear way,and if that is all static and fog, I do not encounter.
            Thank you so much for listening, I will update how wildlife consultation goes this afternoon.
            With Love and Gratitude

  2. Good Morning, Colleen. It has been several months since my last post and felt the need to connect with you again. It is still a struggle with my nephew. I have to confess I have been dealing with disappointment and discouragement & fear where he is concerned. A couple of nights ago I was awake praying, struggling with my feelings about this and “heard” the Holy Spirit prompt me to just say what I was most afraid of so I said ” I am most afraid that this has all been a sham, that his salvation isn’t real and if that is so what will happen now?” Then I “heard” in my spirit: “I am still sovereign” Why are you so fearful?” I felt peace again and even though He did not choose to answer my question with a yes or no about my nephew I felt He did answer my fear and that brought me back to faith and trust and surrender. I still don’t know what will happen and it breaks my heart for him and his family, but I do know that my God is faithful and good. Please pray that I will have discernment to know what God wants of me in this hard situation. So that I am in His will and not in His way. Thank you so much for the great work you do and for giving me a place to go with my struggle in this. God bless you greatly!

    • Judy,
      What an incredible testimony to your trust right here…amazing! I think the Lord did answer you and is showing you His direction as you wait on Him. When we are in such difficult places internally, we forget to remember how rarely God answered ‘why’ questions throughout scripture; or that He chose to redirect one’s focus from their circumstances to Himself. Our lives are to be solely focused on God, then as circumstances ebb and flow, we can trust He is steering the ship and will keep us afloat. It’s when we begin to “fish” for stuff that He is choosing to withhold for whatever reason, we get off center. The fact that you simply called out to Him, He gave you direction that you are following IS the answer. That is amazing! Never worry about sharing your struggles here; that is what this blog is about…and together we pull one another up with love and care. It’s an honor to hear from you! I think you would enjoy some of the new interview we posted on Tuesday…celebrating Ken as a caregiver because the work is so hard. What you are doing is hard but as an Aunt who loves deeply, your prayerful obedience is to be applauded. Please let me know what comes of things. It is wonderful to connect with you today. Colleen

      • Hi Colleen. I confess I am feeling very downhearted. Things with my nephew are getting worse. He stole some things from my house & has also pawned some of their things. I know he is buying pills. Again. He has stopped going to church & when I try to encourage him he said it just wasn’t working & won’t talk about his relationship with Christ. He is becoming more selfish with little regard for providing for his family. I go from despair to holding on to the knowledge that my God is still in control. The rest of my family has given up on him & angry thinking after all the support I have given him that he is using me. I tried to explain to my sister that I don’t feel used. That I made a commitment to God to be in this spiritual battle no matter the pain & I want to remain & allow the Holy Spirit to give me the ability to love my nephew through this. I feel alone in this trying to pray with my niece to encourage her to deepen her relationship with Christ. But in reality I know I am not alone just my emotions. Please pray for me to stay where God wants me in this & to have His wisdom to know what to do in peace & joy so my family can see His work in this. Thank you so much

        • Oh my dear Judy,
          This is such a discouraging note…I hear it in your “voice”. I’m so sorry and you are right, you are not alone but it often feels that way. I think this is how Christ must have felt so often; rejected by family and friends, those who pretended to be religious but weren’t, and then betrayed and beaten. He so understands right where you are so keep running to Him. There is no greater comfort than the comfort from one who fully understands. You are also right on with the fact that God is fully in control; He is working all these messes into a greater good which we can’t see yet. And sometimes that good involves a lot of pain because it’s a transforming ‘good’… the process includes change in us and others which He pulls together in His mysterious, sovereign way. It may be that He is directing you to remain more silent; to not speak because your nephew and family know your position. No one can argue with silence. You can be just as strong and effective without saying a word. Live out your convictions in action; no words but action often speak the loudest to those who ‘have no ears to hear’. I also suggest establishing some very firm boundaries which you may have already done. When dealing with an addict, you must have unshakable, unbreakable boundaries…clearly defined consequences as well. It may mean you seek the help of a wise counselor who understands addiction issues. It may also help to attend a support group for family members of addicts. Alanon is one but there are many. Sometimes being with others who are experiencing similar struggles feeds our souls. In all, I will step up my prayers for you and believe that God is at work…leading you, guiding you, and providing you with His wisdom and direction. Thank you so much for letting me know and please continue to connect anytime. I so admire you!
          Colleen Swindoll-Thompson

  3. Sandra,
    Many abusers never come clean…but you don’t have to live in those old shadows. The book I just referred to is titled “Exquisite Agony” by Gene Edwards. You will find it incredibly helpful…his writing is fantastic and the truth shared is deep. In all things, we never lose the power to choose our direction. We choose our focus, our mind set, our actions and attitudes…regardless of what has happened to us, we must choose how to live moving forward. The enemy LOVES to get us tripped up into blame, bitterness, waiting for the other person to fail or fall; countless fears and distractions can come from our pain. But if we choose Christ and focus on His guiding truth with reckless abandon, then He promises to provide what we cannot provide for ourselves. Psalm 119:23-35….read those words and circle all the verbs. Notice how many actions…purposed choices the writer speaks of in following God’s ways. I hear you doing that and am cheering you on my friend. Stay the course, give yourself grace, and know you are on the right path. Your friend, Colleen

    • This book intrigues me, I will eventually look it up…Thank you for wisdom and such amazing encouragement to keep moving forward.
      Thank you again

  4. Wow, Cat, great perspectives. To grieve and rejoice; to see a ladder to help rather than a crushing blow; great goals for yourself and for others of us to learn from. Thanks, Gina

    • Gina,
      No kidding. Isn’t it a great way to put it…. “when God shows His presence”! I know you have counted on that and continue to; as do we all. I hope you are finding time to rest a bit these days….even if it’s a minute here or there, it’s rest in Jesus. Have a great day. Always great to hear from you my friend. Colleen

      • Ah, rest.

        I was looking at Hebrews 4 only a week or so ago, and though I know the rest we’re being asked to consider is our eternal rest, verse 10 struck a particular chord with me.

        ‘For he who has entered His rest has himself also ceased from his works as God did from His,’

        Entering God’s rest is to have ceased from MY works. God’s rest here on this earth maybe comes when I cease from my work (even work I presume to do ‘for’ God). His work perhaps is still restful, as Jesus said in Matthew 11:30,

        “My yoke is easy and my burden is light.”

        We are pulling together with Christ. When it’s the Father’s work, not mine, the Lord Jesus and I are working together, He makes it light and easy…perhaps restful purpose.

        Thanks for your concern, Colleen. I am resting this week. Financial and business separation with my husband is going through soon, so sad because it could be different but isn’t. God is leading me already onto new paths though – with families of children with a vision impairment, my photos and writing. Still, relationships are my dearest thing, and many of them are still broken. My communication on Facebook is careful as my youngest has liked the page as well, must take care what to write in that space.

        Hope your father-in-law is doing ok, and that you all are doing ok with it all. My step-mother is going into palliative care this week. Hoping your health and your husband’s has improvement and/or respite…and that wedding plans are a joy for you all.

        In Christ alone, Gina

        • Gina,
          I took special time to evaluate each of your words…they are so important. As I read in my New Living translation from Tyndale, it talks a lot about Hebrews 4:1-11. It says “this passage has been a theological puzzle for commentators. The concept has various connotations from the OT, including the Promised Land as a place to rest from slavery and wandering and the Sabbath day as a weekly day of rest. The author adds Gen 2:2, another passage that speaks of God’s rest, to the discussion and it relates to ceasing from one’s own work as God did from his (4:10) ….there is much more but the authors end with saying “God’s rest that is available through Jesus has two aspects. First, those who believe in him have ceased from their own works-they no longer work for God’s acceptance (similar to what you said and as is written in Eph 2:8-9) and enjoy the blessings of peace with God (John 14:27; Acts 10:36, Rom. 5:1, 2 Cor 5:19-21) And secondly, they look forward to an eternal life of rest and enjoyment in God’s presence (Isa 26:19; Rev 14:13)…it is Jesus who provides perfect rest (Matt. 11:28-30). So I think you have it wrapped up well, Gina. There is a mixture of God’s rest on earth provided only by Him when we relinquish our care into His hands; and that of God’s care over our eternal salvation. Isn’t it wonderful that we serve a faithful God who covers all bases…our needs, cares, and eternal concerns. I am so very sorry to hear of the relational breakdown; yet I think I know you well enough now to say you have done all possible to make things work. Sometimes, letting them go allows God to do what only He can do…and that may mean loss on this side of heaven but great work on the other side. And there is great purpose for you here as well. So we will pray, wait, and pray more as His path for you unfolds. I’m excited to find where He leads as you follow His faithful, consistent hand. So much love to you my friend. Colleen

  5. Sandra,
    While you have every reason to feel disrupted once again, I think there is an incredible purpose here. One of the hardest things in life is to find peace in the midst of ongoing irritations. It is the life most families live when they have a child or loved one with disabilities. There are constant challenges and caregiving needs. Similar to your home situation, there is always something begging for your attention or needing to be done. However, it may be the Lord’s allowing this to help you find His peace even in the midst of stuff that is unsettling. Do we like bugs or leaks or septic issues????NEVER! But, He can bring you to a place of rest even if those things exist. I know bombing the place to kill roaches isn’t your first choice; but it may be a good one for the time being. Maybe you can stay away from the septic area outside and walk elsewhere. I also know it’s easy for those who have endured abuse to hyper-focus; to ruminate over something that we must figure out how to endure. Instead of thinking “Oh my gosh, another problem just when everything was worked out”; think “what is the best way I can endure this problem and find peace”? The Lord offers that to all of us; we just have to fix our eyes on Him and not let the other distractions of the day rob us of seeing Him in areas of life. Maybe it is a good idea to ask Him, “Lord, help me find you today…where do you want me to focus and place my heart?” You are so creative, Sandra, you can maybe gather some paper and make cards, a scrapbook of the beautiful things you see; perhaps find old furniture and redo some pieces and sell them on ebay or amazon or in a local store. Maybe sewing some curtains or pillows…I did that for a little shop in town years ago. The sewing got my mind off where I felt discouraged. I went to fabric shops and collected small left overs of fabric, edging, and trim then made then into pillows and sold them in a store. Anything that brings you peace will be a distraction from the frustrations. I know you can do this. Let me know what you think. I’ll be praying. Colleen

    • Hello Colleen, It is life itself that i believe can be most amazing and at times crazy for what it presents. I thought much of you as single mom with Jonathan and the challenges that you faced solo, although you have a good relationship with your parents, it was still primarily solo i think? My heart goes out to you for this what you endured, and I think harder for that it was about someone you Loved and was feeling heart broken for some of the challenges a little one new to world could have . I am so happy he had you and you had your family. this was a good analogy of and thought of greater purpse being seeking peace in such storms, like refrigerators in a hurricane ,big things. Maybe i can alter my mind in how i perceive these issues too. I feel my mind not well, and maybe in all the silence i have looked for some of these things as you have mentioned in past for distraction from all the lonliness or feeling have alot on plate solo??? I will ask the Lord where He does want me to focus and place my heart as you have encouraged as I think that sounds wonderful suggestion. I used to sew, I do not have a sewing machine, great thoughts, and I like what you did with pillow making…I have painted baskets outside and begun to play a little more with creative thoughts in yard, i do have the chaulk paints and have some furntiute i want to paint, i never thought to sell on ebay. I used to make cards so many years back. I will find these things even when so overwhelmed, to get myself not to get mind so much in reaction as if I am being burried and focus, ask for where He wants me to focus during these most challenging times. I did make it through bug bombs as invasive and unselttling as it felt. there was one straggler last nite that may have been hiding and staggered out of space, but so far that was only one after bombing all.The contracter came out and did this ,I gave him 10.00.I have been washing off counters, washing sheets,clothes floors,walls,etc to bring space into cleanliness. There is a quiet here, i like, just me no critters to feel on edge with in my space accept for that one last nite so far…..i like the silence when feels like just me here, for moment, i think when head/mind gets lonely, i need see how my mind is distracting something into my space???? it feels like something peculair with mind there i need go more to Christ and Heart with…. I have septic service to come out as soon as more dry ,less rain in forecast,think Wed to tell more on this issue. I will try to meditate more today than have in last week to keep me in better space too.
      Thank you COlleen for your notes and encouragement,and caring support.
      Thank you,I hope you receive book today too.

      • Sandra,
        It’s good to know God has “got” all of us. As we are reminded in Ps 139, in Job’s book, in Romans and other places as well….there is nowhere we can go without God’s love for us. God is with us always….even though we feel lost and forgotten, those are feelings, not truths. The truth says, we are His and He is ours; except for those who choose NOT to place their lives and faith in His hands. I know there is such an incredibly creative side to you; yes the challenges sometimes call for our attention but it’s nice to remember play and hobbies are necessary for mental health just as is physical exercise, spiritual development, and emotional regulation. Sometimes our minds are not our best friends; especially when the filter has been colored with pain and damage. We may think we have things pretty clear but we must have others who will choose to be honest and tell us when we’re not seeing things clearly. That is why a good, strong therapist is so vital…to tell us where our filter may be skewing the picture we have of life at any given moment. So, hobbies, painting, planting, making things….just think Sandra, being able to use your hands is a gift…my son cannot use his hands the way most people can. Most of us never realize the gifts God has given us just in having a body that moves and cooperates with itself without complication. Movement, imagination, our senses, creativity…there are so many things people have that are gifts. I couldn’t see it that way until I had a son who struggles at best to use his body and mind with ease. That is why I’m so thankful for his life…it reveals how GOOD our heavenly Father is to us by allowing us to have body’s and mind’s that work relatively well. So as you settle, remember these are gifts…ask him how to use them. You are so gifted, so smart, so determined, and so able…yes, the home and bugs are messy and terribly bothersome…I get that completely! But, the fact that you can walk, see, smell, taste, touch, color, paint, build, create…all of those are gifts He can use in ways we cannot imagine. So ask Him to direct you and HE will. I promise. You are wonderful! Great to hear from you my friend. Colleen

        • Hello Colleen, Thank you for your thoughtful note. I will read the Ps 139 , I know I will find refreshed mind when read this. Thank you for reminding me of His Love, I feel ashamed as I truly know at the deepest level that there is a purpose and He Loves Me and has not forgotten, yet that feeling of emotion that I am forgotten sometimes is there, sounds mixed but I know it is me more than Him that is ashamed for letting Him down for my selfishness of relationship at these times if that makes sense. I had put my creativity at bay a long while, it is sparking back up here and there, last year I hand drew a sign for someone for Christmas and painted it, that was the first time I had lettered a phrase in long while….I can appreciate what you have said about your son, and I understand what you have said here, I will process what gifts of creativity can help me inspire. What is before us that is what sometimes we are not in touch with as deeply as you have found with Jonathan in your life, which really is tremendous.It really is. I am so happy he has you and your family, so much Love.
          I love scent, i smell perfumes in stores and flowers ,. I need bring this to the Lord and ask for guidance . I actually ahve wanted to write a book for a few years now, i am not sure what but I really want to do this. My xhusband had told me I was good writter expressively. I looked into joining a group a few years back and it was for those actually in process of wwriting a book, I would love to work on my focus and creativity to narrow down what and how,and begin doing this. I want God to bring me in touch with my gifts as a woman , I have dreams always, i would like a real pottery wheel out back when house is “feeling better”, and maybe some money and have a covered shed there or something to practice pottery making. must be about 4 years back now i took a pottery class, and it was more independent, my intention was to look at another location where more hands on to really learn and get good at doing this. I had not found a class again . I will look for the direction you speak of. I am feeling i suppose a bit discourgaed, althought i know i will feel that inspiration and hear His word and know what foot to put in front of other and where focus ,and what gifts I can practice /surface .
          Thank you too for asking about my walk, it was humid damp day, i walked anyway, i usually love the sun on face around the shaded areas of park, it is always good to walk, yes, it was a really good part of my day. Something popped into head during my meditative walk , for some reason I found myself saying letter to my brother in law who essentially is dying of liver cancer, he has done alot of damage to me, my sister, her girlfriend, and so many others. In letter I could only speak for myself and I felt so uplifted to think and even consider writing this letter. I stated with your healh not well, before you die I want to let you know that I forgive you. I elaborated a little in my head as I felt very uplifted in that moment. I may not accept his behavior and will remain with boundary for he has never spoken the truth of his damage to others, that i leave with you as it is your issue, not of my own. And I write this letter to let it all go, and I am Free, I let you go and I am Free.
          I am not sure where that came from .
          I am giong to write again later Colleen, this has brought some tears to my eyes , I I will update you again tomorrow. I will read the Psalm 139, I know I have read before in past we talked, I am sorry my mind need remembrance with reading the word….I so Thank You and for the encouraging words and Faith that you hold so amazingly in our Lord, Thank You Colleen,
          I will see what creative project comes to me, maybe good time to take out paint even if i wanted a “special room” in house, the second bedroom going to be a artist room and meditation/yoga /office combination, all in my dream.
          I know it will come into frutiition.
          I have magazine photos of what i like it to be/look like and enjoy this space.
          Thank you
          Have a good evening, and I know you will let me know when you receive the book….any moment I think. I often wish I was in your community, I would have a Church and an extended family that I know truly cares and find more inspiring things maybe with this surrounding. I will work at making this my dream here, this is where God wants me to be in the now.
          Goodnite now

          • Sandra,
            I certainly did not want to have you feel shame or negative thoughts about the things I mentioned…our bodies, gifts, abilities, what I have learned from Jon, so on. This learning has taken 17 years, not days or months. It has come from many days of facing that he is different, examining how those differences affect his life and our lives, and learning to view humanity in a different light. However, I would have never considered such things as movement, creativity, our body’s senses as gifts until I had a child without the ability to use or have such capacities until I found what happens when we are without such what I now call gifts. So give yourself some grace; we are all in the process of learning which takes a life time and much connected grace with other safe people. Next, it’s interesting to note that the cancer eating up your relative is in the liver. Actually, studies have shown the liver is a “holding organ”; the areas of our hearts which lack forgiveness, grace, and carry resentments are actually found in liver problems. I’ve learned this from three liver cancer patients. Two of which underwent liver replacements; the third had a different story….she began making a list of those she needed to forgive, things needing to be let go of, releasing control, so on….and her liver began to heal itself. So, there is something to be noted about having liver issues. While I can’t tell you what you are to do with the relational issues between you and your brother in law, I can say it’s vital for you to ask The Lord to lead you, guide you, direct you as only HE can do. IN that, you will hear His direction and thus must obey and follow through. This is such an incredible experience….to let go of earthly things for God to heal us as only He can do. May you be blessed tonight and in the days ahead. Good to hear form you. Colleen

          • Hi colleen.it was just my own experience of feeling the way I was..honestly not from anything you had said.I was delighted that you shared the amazing reflection from having Jonathan in your life…as you said God showing thst these functions are truly gifts and the sensitivity of knowing and feeling this was really inspiring depth of human appreciation for what we do have.. Thsnk you for connecting. I was really glad we share same interest in what you share about different organs holding specific meaning and or emotion…thank you for sharing that as I was not familiar other than anger emotion in liver..what you noted is very real and my brother in law has never come clean on the truth of so many he has pattern of abuse
            .he has never confessed or admitted nor sought forgiveness. That is one reason it taken such a toll long time for me finally say I need finally let go on my end what I have control over..I would talk to my dr.before I wrote real letter.I almost br lieve because it would not be appreciated I keep my heart with our Lord and letter.God knows me and will guide me yes….I will listen. If it leads to sending yes only if God will..it may be the best thing ? I will keep you posted.thank you again Colleen.goodnite.Sandra

    • Hello Colleen, you have stated so much Truth here, yes I am struggling with my mind and how it hyper focuses esp in challenge, I need write this down “where do you want me to focus and place my heart” and let go to God completely. I think my tendency to control still takes a grip and mind gets stuck in this. And yes the distractions i have let rob my day and me of seeing Him in all areas. I am goign to walk today ,the one place i seem reflect in nature and have all return. even though it overcast and will be heavy rains again, will do this. ANd i will be thinking of where use the creativity beyond some of the projects. I do need organize alot of paperwork ,not exactly creative but need get some things into some hefty plastic boxes i bought to help organize some of what took here in move.
      Thank you again,

      • Sandra,
        I can’t wait to hear about your walk…what a wonderful time of quietness. And, the fact that you are noticing some things to put in place is wonderful. Actually, when there is chaos on the inside of us, there is often chaos on the outside of us….our space, rooms, home, or what have you. When we learn to reduce and simplify the internal churnings, the external stuff seems to settle as well. So I will look forward to hearing about how you are doing this week. Colleen

        • Hello Colleen, Thinking of you today. I walked again, sun peeking out after many days of clouds with rain. I also thought of you this afternoon, i have had on Enya radio station ,there are some commercials not often but overall all Enya, it is playing off laptop as i am cleaning and putting some plastic on some windows as very old and alot of bugs get in this way, so until i know they are sealed i did in my bedroom and other bedroom on that side of house for now. I continue to think about my creativity….and was frustrated early today for I awoke well,although with angst in pit of stomach, so i breathed and meditated a bit, then nothing seemingly was falling into place, so i put all down and went for walk at park to come back much more restored and doing my best to find peace in the storm. Septic cleaning is set for tomorrow wednesday am…..I am praying and placing positive energy that there is no finding of anything other than assess and cleaning taking place. Please keep me in prayer with this clearance and nothing more . Clemson agricultrue agent and her water specialist were able to squeeze me in THurs 11am instead of 25th, so I am pleased we can walk through and discuss water diversion plan..this is a free program through Clemson Univ Agricultrue throughout SC,each city offers all kinds of programming for no cost to home owner, farmer,etc…
          I did read Psalm 139, I remembered it immediately, and found it interesting that is how i was feeling yesterday that the Lord had all eyes on me, and I did feel I had not been the best I could be so I prayed today that He forgive me for the confusion I feel, and if he would continue to stay close and bring me closer in clear guidance and direction so I know for certain what or where he wants me to focus,and to be.
          Thank you for your notes. I am wondering if the book found its way to you, sure hope it has made a home with your presence in reading it and my note.
          Very Best to you,and your family. I hope this note finds you all well this day.this moment.
          With Gratitude

          • Sandra,
            I LOVE Enya!!! Was just listening to it today. Wow, we like some similar things…very cool. I have not received the book although I’m sure it will be here shortly, no worries. I just recorded several interviews and in them, the individuals refer to our feelings…in the interview with Marilyn Meberg we laughed because her wonderful line is “our feelings have no brains”…and they don’t. For all of us, especially when there has been trauma at major developmental points in life, our feelings are going to fluctuate a LOT! The important thing is to evaluate what may have triggered them, if there isn’t a specific trigger such as something happening, it could be a scent, time of year, time of day, experience remembered, so on…start to chart them. I found several feeling charts on line after reading your words. Here are a couple links….some are rather primary but you get the point. http://www.freeprintablebehaviorcharts.com/ http://www.psychpage.com/learning/library/assess/feelings.html http://www.sba.pdx.edu/faculty/mblake/448/FeelingsList.pdf
            All three of these links offer an incredible number of feeling words. So use this to identify the feelings, chart possible triggers, then evaluate what could be adding to your feelings….stress, rain, home issues, so on. Then, I would go to scripture and look up the words…find out what God says about sorrow, anger, loss, hurt, pain, emptiness, loneliness, so on. This is how putting God’s word into your heart happens and it becomes your foundation for stabilization. The TRUTH sets us free, our feelings don’t…and often, if there is fear involved (which I would imagine there is at times), fear seems to collect friends (as Patsy Clairmont says). Her book on emotions is excellent as is her workbook. Old but good. As you take your thoughts captive (Romans 12:2), you will find feelings do not have as much power over you and you are better able to breathe and think clearly. They are valuable and God made us with feelings for a purpose; but we are not to be ruled by them if that makes sense. Let me know what you think as you go through this exercise. All my love and care for you, Colleen

          • Hello Colleen, I am happy to hear from your today and that we share the similarities. I thought on walk today how it is great how you relate to so many individuals. I remembered how much you Love Enya, I began a few evenings of listenitng to that radio link. I find her voice just as soothing, really wonderful music. I kept listening and listening and did not really want to turn down computer. At some point i am giong to pick up an mp3 player to download music to have on hand to put on headset and bring to my experience of listening and calming. I am very interested in finding this interview you speak of as well as the others that discuss feelings. And I will look for this workbook, i guess on google? Thank you again for the websites and I will as well look at these. It would be useful last nite as interestingly i was doing just that, I could not hear any guidance or direction or comfort, so I remembered we had thought about this and you encouraged me to look up feelings, so I looked up comfort, I became frustrated for nothing was truly grabbing at me, I was sleepy and think Job is where I ended without real comfort. I seem to have “felt ” worse that I am never good enough or something like that. And awoke this morning frustration did turn into some anger with unwanted distraction from world from the “Enya kind of space I had been with” and as day progessed I have been sad to now sad with anger . Just like what am I doing God that is not allowing me to receive? I asked while walking. It does not seem to matter what i do, good, bad, ugly, it seemingly remains the way it is. Yes some things good pop up. Today I

          • Sandra,
            I wonder how my notes are greeting you today. Since there was some other business I was attending to, I’m catching up and all in one day, there’s lots to process. Just remember, God is not allowing you to receive; he may be protecting you from overload. Sometimes His silence is because he wants us to wait, sometimes to read, other times to just trust He is at work in spite of how we feel. Romans 12:2….take every thought captive…you may not “feel” rested or calm; especially with all you have in your life. But don’t allow that frustration to become your focus…it’s only a distraction. Simply move past it and say I will choose to focus on something else for now. Then go walk, color, look through a magazine, meditate, whatever. Sometimes we want things fixed NOW which in human time. God is timeless…not limited to our time. So what may seem like a day, week, or month is nothing to Him. Keep your hands open, your words honest as you are and know that God is near to you. Colleen

          • Thank you Colleen , I will read Romans 12:2…….I was believing I was a disappointment somehow, I will believe this message you write. I really liked the woman you mentioned that i looked up and she is so happy, I want to be so happy , as I thought i was, but I guess I was not,and on way there to that space.
            I get stuck on these distractions as if punishment for something I have done. I have been doing all to best stay out of head, it has been hugely challenging for me. I will believe that God is protetecting me for overload which I can relate to so well,as I am very much overloaded. I appreciate your greeting with all other business you ahve hapening. Maybe someday you will be able to say I received the book! That will bring me great joy in my heart to hear that God delivered it to you.
            Thank you

          • Sandra,
            After reading your words and expressing your feelings, I want you to know you are one amazing survivor. From life’s earliest days, and from what you have told me over the months, you felt like you were in trouble or wrong about something….this is sometimes called a negative, ambivalent attachment issue which means you were never given the security and assuredness that you were okay just the way you were. Kids have no idea how life is to be so all they know is the home they grow up in; for you, it was abusive and hurtful. What happens then is called internalization, you internalize or take in the belief that you are not okay and your acceptance or meaning is based on what you provide or do for others…no one was looking out for you. And because those around you were so unpredictable, you never knew when the other shoe would fall…a constant state of crisis. When we believe our meaning or value is based upon what we do rather than who God says we ARE, there are huge fears, negative thoughts, difficulties in regulating emotions…like a constant earthquake. Usually life falls apart in one or more important areas because the life skills for coping were never learned and you just simply wear out. That’s not a blame statement; it’s one of recognizing how exhausting it is to keep others happy or settled or whatever. You are now learning that as an adult, it’s not your job to make other’s happy or settled….that’s their job. It FEELS wrong because you have not practiced this in healthy relationships and it takes time and energy. However, you are practicing these skills as you move through the challenges you have faced. Think with me…you aren’t taking care of your brother’s emotions, the wedding issues, conflicts that continue to abound in your family of origin, working out where to live, managing the bug issues, septic problems…tons of healthy activity that you are choosing to take on in new and healing ways. That is what I mean by being an amazing survivor. For every one person who chooses life and freedom in Jesus, many remain in their old habits thinking they will have better results without changing THEIR ways of thinking and relating. It is of no surprise that you feel angry….of course you do. It’s like you have carried a 100 pound backpack since you were tiny and you are just now learning it was never yours to carry and there’s some missed pieces because you were forced to carry such a load. I hope that makes sense. That is really angering! That little part of you is very mad and your adult part needs to nurture and care for you. Like I’ve talked about playing, creativity, being like a kid….go for it; swing and laugh and maybe adopt an animal from a rescue place if you want. Animals are very healing for humans in many ways. In all, you will learn to find balance; learn to relate responsibly without having to take care of others and to play when needed. This is really the message I’ve wanted to share after reading your notes because it sounds like you need to give yourself permission to feel…not to act or make choices on your feelings but to acknowledge them and accept them…they are part of you. At first, you may feel angry with verses about God’s love for you because you don’t feel ‘lovable’; however, an excellent exercise would be to look in the back of your Bible and find “God’s Love” in the concordance. Or look it up on Gateway or Bible Hub or Olive Tree…three great sites and apps. Ask the Lord to help you choose to believe what He says about you…He formed you, He purposed you before the foundations of the earth, (Ps 139); there is nothing you can do to escape or have Him stop loving you (Romans 8) because it’s His choice to love you. I think that’s enough for now…take it slowly. Make a list of say two or three verses, ask yourself what they are saying about God’s love for you, how you feel when you read them, are your feelings based on truth or past wounding, then choose to believe the truth. That is laying the foundation of your life. When we believe we are loved, valued, treasured, and secure, life opens up so much joy and freedom…that is what God has for YOU! Let me know how you are doing when you have time. Colleen

          • Hello Colleen, I wanted to say you are so knowledgable,sensitive and kind, amazing acceptance through your brialliant understanding of the layers of psyche/development and our Creator, our God, and Jesus Christ our Savior. This all is so exact ,and Thank you for gathering the information in heart and mind to validate and expand on what some of these issues are, as the ambivalent attachement issue, ever so me. I thought I had just been getting out of that with people in general and I did it with God. I pushed Jesus away feelign so angry and hurt not believing I am okay. I still feel closed and i know when I am ready He will flood into my Heart in probably the most amazing way I can ever imagine from before i recently Shut down. It is kind of sad how someone like me can get stuck in believing that is safe to shut down when truly I know He is Love and to let Him in would be best to do under my circumstances of numbness from so much emotional pain in now from past wound and current circumstance remaining without good flow of living. I Will focus on “When we believe our meaning or value is based upon what we do rather than who God Says we ARE, there are huge fears,negative thoughts,difficulties in regulating emotions….like a constant earthquake.” as you stated in your note, and truest of connection in your note. I do feel worn out especially lately. I was truly working all effort on making God happy, there were nites I cried my heart and soul out. He has come, I have seen Him, I so much wanted my life to ease up and flow more goodness into it. I held so strong there for some time in only focusing on God belieiving I knew what He wanted of me by His word,yet life was presenting something different.It seemed too much if He was testing me again and again with such challenges i am facing. I became so confused. I seemingly put so much energy into change and the old hit harder if that makes sense….to point I numbed all sides out . I know I am not making much sense right now in thoughts here,although I know you completely understand and know what I am experiencing .. I will leave this for now and I will look forward to your interview so much with Patsy for down path,and I in meantime will do as you mentioned, look up God’s Love in back of Bible or Bible Gateway and maybe can soften my heart to open up and feel soemthing really good,for it needs to feel something so good. I will find something creative /playful to help me .I also intend to have Reiki this week or Monday, my friend stated I have shut down heart too, and this will help.
            Thank you for your time,patience to truly connect and relate to me so well, I realize that takes such clarity and focus and time. I am grateful that you have taken the time to share such light with me and my situation here. I am most grateful. Thank You, Have a good evening,

          • Sandra,
            Your honesty is wonderful…as is your self-reflection and awareness. It’s no surprise that you were trying to “please God”; that’s all you have known for acceptance. That is why I said it may ‘feel’ upside down but healthy behavior is carving a whole new path. I fully understand the tension you are dealing with internally, no reason to be concerned for confusion. The very best news I can share with you is that I got your gift…amazing, generous, lovely, and wonderful. I’ve already quoted from it on my Facebook page. I think it may be good to interact on the Facebook page…you will have tons of support and many who are walking in similar footsteps. Plus, I’ve listed so many other organizations you can begin to interact with…this will help you practice your developing social relationships but maintain a sense of personal control. Life will ease up as you begin to let God care for you. All my care and love, Colleen

          • Hello Colleen, I am so Happy to hear you have received your book gift ! Yeah! SO thrilled to hear you have enjoyed already and posted something of your joy in reading a Truth. This is great to hear and continue to enjoy reading and sharing.
            Thank you so much for appreciation of my honesty Colleen,this means so much to me, in that this is truly my Soul purpose, Truth. I often thought if i could do all again, if i could be a defense lawyer, I would help many get to Truth …lol , I had just figured that out near 50 now…..Maybe there is something greater as this path of Truth of God that will be fate for me in purpose. I thought too that you and my Dr. are the only two who have ever embraced angry feeling, accepted it just as any other feeling and ever so accepted that God accepts and Loves me so even with these feelings. I value that more than anything, and I thank you for embracing me duirng my struggle .And I appreciate hugely your relating so well to all I am experiencing internally.and that “it may “feel” like all upside down but healthy behavior is carving a whole new path”, so wonderful in GRACE you are. Thank you for understanding so well and encouraging God’s Love through these awkward yet some amazing moments of reflection and awareness.
            I thought of you today at park, I found the words to penetrate in all you have been saying developmentally and in Christ word there is Love and acceptance, seek not from wound but by Truth, developmentally all connected in this book, and I realized I have read and reflected from wound in some of the readings of Bible reading and lost the Truth and became fearful,and as you say it is my “feeling” that I have am displeasing to God for not being good enough, I became so aware in reading ,written so well for me to absorb exactly depth of my being in this developmentally as you have always spoken with me…..The book is “Hiding From Love”, by Dr. John Townsend…I have had book by your recommendation back a while and just picked it up to take with to park and finally read some of it.I may still feel in a depression and/or fog, I will keep at this I know, littel glimpses like this are there to keep me connected to reopen my Heart. The Reiki Master said he could not work on me as I was too angry this morning and I would not be able to receive, I thought is there not something that we can do to help…as much as I understand his knowing that in past when I “felt” angry and got on table I did not receive, so essentially saving me cost of something not giong to work today…. I did feel somwhat shunned for there is some alternative means in massage that I thought he could identify or in talking that maybe could have brought me to better space, I will need accept that the appt was for Reiki,and God had a different will for me as I then landed at park and opened book,seemingly just what He wanted me to read, and the answer was clear of where I have had all my “feelings” accpeted in Grace,and am being guided that God Love and Grace are so much part of this growth for me to see in such a way,and this book I oepned was so good and perfect timing to expand what this means, receiving Grace in midst such struggle from lack of full developmental needs met…the thoughts were ever so clear as if i understood all at the moment i began to read, what a great author as you have said, a great individual ,and I was so delighted to know of Dr.Townsend and all the Dr.’s of his close connection he works and learns with,Dallas Seminary and the Minirth-Meter Clinic, It is so wonderful to hear there are individuals as greatly knowing of the layers of development ,gentle and ever so from the Heart,kindness as these and offering care to those who struggle. It so much reminded me of you and your mission and I had my first spark in long while where I am so grateful and know more than I did yesterday about those who care so much.
            I have not yet found myself on facebook, I have not due to so open for maybe those i would not want to have posting read through someone through someone else and then to someone I would not be connected? I will continue to consider this, and people have their families posted,etc….i seem so alone if set this up. I may honestly do as like you say there are some amazing supportive network of people to connect.
            Thank you so very much for caring and loving encouragement always
            Sandra, Enjoy your new book!!! I know you will have read it from cover to cover by this afternoon or evening. ENJOY!

          • Sandra,
            I’m so glad you have found the book by Townsend helpful. It was a big turning point in my life when I read it and realized coming out of the woods happens for us all at different ages and stages. You are on the path…that is the only thing that matters. Just think, if your Reiki time had happened, you may not have had the time to sit in the park or read and reflect; God’s got you in His everlasting, ever-loving arms my friend. I know He’s working through you even though you can’t see it now. It’s very healing to have time in nature, breathing, and simply being. Accept the time as a gift; it may not always be so available to enjoy each moment and know God’s got you in His hands. All my love, Colleen

          • Hello Colleen, I know I had not updated you in a while on house repairs….today the contracter who helped with leak and so fair and affordable came in with quote way over any other quotes…yeek…oh well, God sent him for the leak repair…jsut when it was raining so hard that day, he delivered this contracter for that specific repair. God also brought me a wonderful gutter contracter who came in with beyond fair price of 400.00, 4.25/linear foot was the intial cost that i already found 200-300 less than other contracters and his warranty a lifetime versus others 5-20 year warranties, so that was terific and then he reduced it to 4.00 /linear foot because he saw i needed to replace some wood and repaint that trim before placing gutter up,so he said that may help me…YES! so now back to asking the Lord to send me the individual for helping get my living room together, floor most of all.
            I spoke with attorney and he said he will have an answer for bathroom repiar and seller response by end of next week,he sounded optimisitc???
            In meantime I cannot be sad, i truly need to maybe focus on Lord has a plan and maybe i will follow Reiki Master suggestion of do some of it myself??? I have done what i thought i could in living room, carpet been up for months but stains,etc sitting on wood above subflooring i could take up but need someone to follow right away to put plywood down and I will live with that until get other flooring for on top of plywood.
            I did want to write and say I saw a movie last nite, I have added for my personal favorites this movie, “Ragamuffin”. For me it was so close to home, in that my struggles ,and seeking to feel lovable by self and others , and maintaining my Faith in God, and what is so Real and True, His Honesty, and understanding of it too rare to have this Honesty. I really liked this movie.The thought i had was when I am Free, totally free , I hope my life is not preparing for an end, as I have spoken in previous posts, although I know if that was God will, it would be the Purest of transitions that I know will be Home. I do pray that I get to enjoy for first time what Free feels like here on Earth a while before God will takes me to eternal life with Him. It is whatever His will.
            I also wanted to say that regarding a dog, I had a beautiful English Setter 3 years back he passed away….I Loved Him, he was my only purpose as he was Blind for his last few years and I lived on third floor apartment after divorce and in end sometimes needed to carry him up stairs…I gave him my life pretty much. I think I had mentioned I would be home at nite for he wanted me there to comfort after walking,and I simply Loved him so much. I have been told in the now I cannot take care of a dog, with it being so much to take care of me right now,and the house repairs and mosst of all the expense of having a dog,so I put it off. I am nto a great leader when it comes to pets….not the dog whisperer.lol. and it creates hardship for the dog i think. I did however before you had mentioned this about a dog from rescue, i had just written email to WarDogs, and they have adoptions of those dogs no longer in war or did not make the training qualifications to go to war, free adoptions, so I inquired if they are trained for PTSD owners,that I am not in position to be the leader. I had not heard back although just maybe . I would need to apply and wait and find a way to pick up in Texas…yep somewhere near you i guess. I know there are transporters that help point to point to get these adoptions to new owner. I figured let me see as I know the PTSD dogs from other agencies are too expensive. If this worked out at least I could be more relaxed and knowing the dog understands my anxiety and if in need ,and I certainly will love the dog and keep it well taken care in love.
            I look forward to connecting again,

          • Sandra,
            How have the home repairs come along lately? Hopefully the seller is taking ethical responsibility! The “Ragamuffin” mention reminds me of a work I’ve read “The Ragamuffin Gospel” by a wonderful writer. I wonder if it’s the same person. Brennan Manning is one of my favorite authors as he remains so real…other authors similar to his works include: Henri Nouwen, Timothy Keller, Richard Foster, Richard Rohr, Ann Voskamp, Jon Eldridge, Eugene Peterson, and others. Manning has several works that I think you would love…hopefully this is the same author. I’m so sorry about the loss of your English Setter; our pets are so healing that losing them can be terribly difficult. However, I would say you may reconsider the thought of adopting a pet…there is a freedom of love and gentleness that cannot be expressed. War dogs are especially close to my husband’s heart; his family used to raise German Shepherds and we have one now that is so incredible. Something to reconsider and pray about. It sounds like you are making step-by-step progress my friend, there is no other way to do it than one step at a time. Love connecting and am loving the wonderful book you gave. Thank you again so very much. Colleen

          • Hello Colleen, you are so welcome for the book and so glad that you are enjoying it too. It is so handy to bring along really anywhere too.
            I am thinking this is the author because the movie on netflix was from a book I am almost certain. When I find out or you first we will connect to confirm, I keep thinking of this movie, I so related to the singer/songwriter journey in so many ways. He always felt that he did not fit into this world, I have always felt the same way,etc. I will also look at these other books you mention by Brennan Manning and list these other authors. Are they all non fiction life stories? I will look at this . Thank you for all your kind thoughts in this post about my English Setter I so Loved, and in the other post how your thoughts were so inspiring to remind me even what I am not able see clearly at this time, as you have said that God has me so much in His care and embrace. Thank you so much, and I seem to have expanded the time outdoors in nature now to my yard especially with the crisper air coming in, and sunshine that warms my body and soul jsut enough….I began playing with the landscape,removing old debri and making some changes that i saw better flow of energy and clean up decayed railroad tyes around some garden beds, etc…I may even build a small retaining wall from good rocks. I do have gutters coming this month, just need find someone replace some rotten trim ,think I will use the contracter who said 75.00 rather than someone saying 250.00 just for the labor. Then gutters can get up…Other repairs I was back to seeking affordable help/fair as per Lowes stated the quotes i had for specific work were way over priced. I literally may be putting up some drywall with help from Reiki Master, this would be my first diy major project ever. I will let you know if can get the living room floor more functional , I will have made a decision on that by end of week? I will also let you know by weeks end if my attorney has the good news that I am hoping for,that the Seller come forth in good faith to provide the monies for bathroom floor as I have mentioned the Seller did sign that repair was complete yet my arrival at house after closing this was not found to be true..
            And Colleen, I just love that you have a German Shepard ,and your husband family used to raise them,and fond of War Dogs as well! I had not heard back from war Dogs, I will keep at that to see about this option. Thank you for sharing that with me, and yes I will continue to pray about this , I would really truly love a dog that is familiar with PTSD, how Great would that be , and help me maybe with my own fears without bringing them into the dog, that I think is the beauty of having a dog who can understand PTSD and know how to not take on my anxiety..That would be so terific. Thank you so very much again Colleen, I am happy to connect today. I am so grateful for your encouragement and letting me know I am in process of growing and toward such a better place as whole person,and that only one step at a time, so vital for me.
            I will say a prayer for you in Gratitude. I have another appt set for Reiki Thurs this week.and I am feeling with my working in nature in yard and walking in park and reading “Hiding From Love” so big part in that I feel opening up again to Jesus presence , He is right there and I am taking little steps to accept Him closer as He was so close before I shut down. The book is truly enlightenemnt for me too, I am finding it so exactly what I needed in this time. I have had it for maybe 4-6 months? and it is all about timing as you mention the park versus the Reiki appt working out, God knew where I needed to be. This is so wonderful to be aware of.
            Thank you so very much for your connecting with me and all the wonderful sharing of so many good things, authors, encouragement. continue to find your book enjoyable.
            WIth Gratitude,

          • Sandra,
            I’m so glad the book is helpful to you…it was for me in many ways. And yes, our German Shepherd is a wonderful dog…although a bit nervous at times, he’s just a great companion. Animals of all kids are known to be healing and restoring if the owner is able to care for it. You will know when the time is right. There is a sense of caring for yourself…the parts of you that may be fearful, worried, hurt, or alone…that when you care for these needs in your pet, you are also caring for then in yourself. Sounds like you are still busy with home repairs. I think that is fantastic…stepping out there and trying new things builds your confidence and sense of satisfaction in a job well done. And, if you make mistakes along the way-which we ALL do-then there’s more to the learning and mistakes can be fixed. I’ve put up bead-board in several rooms of our home, made tables and desks from scraps of wood; it’s the joy of creating with your hands something you will enjoy that makes it great. Enjoy today, I hope it’s beautiful. And, don’t forget to see the new post…it’s the interview with Joni and Ken Eareckson Tada…totally incredible. Hope to chat again soon! Colleen

          • Hello Colleen, Thank you for note and sharing , your dog sounds wonderful ,a great companion. And I did not realize that about finding a sense of taking care of yourself when owner able to care for dog……I know that when my dog passed, it did take away so much expression of love for him that i missed and still do, this makes so much sense that which you have said, and I realize that truth for me and my previous dog. As you said when it is time i know it will be there for me to have another dog.
            The home repairs are here and I was overwhlemed today, almost to panick, but I know God has a plan with all this, and I know just like the leak, it was there for a few months and finally the right person arrived that God sent and it was more than affordable at the 35.00 he charged. That was an amazing grace and Blessing . So today I did what i could ot focus on that, that i have been provided by God and I will need put this all in His hands as well. I do intend to do some ot this work, i would love to hear how you did your work, that sounds beautiful and I would like to someday do something like that bead-board, or molding too. And I love picking up old baskets and things that make good little porch tables, I am very impresed that you can make things of wood ,most amazing and crafty you are. That takes so much patience,focus and ability. I would like to be more handy like that and maybe in time I will find that God has presented some of these projects for me. I had simply decided if it is taking that much effort to find the help interested and affordable, then just maybe it is that i learn to do some of this to some level that able. Thank you for sharing, I always think about your sewing skills too, you are very very talented woman. I will look for the new post, Joni and Ken? I know you mentioned this,and I will look to see your interview with them. There are so many good things on your webpage, interviews,etc, how do you do it all! I appreciate your warmth and kindness to connect and wisdom, and sharing of all. It is truly a very pleasant part of my day always to connect and read your thoughts and inspiring suggestions, and wisdom. Thank you!
            WIth Gratitude, and yes I did fall fast asleep last nite in the embrace of God praying with Gratitidue for our connection,and you ,your family ,work and home all to be so very Blessed. I added some other prayers of other individuals who I am grateful,and before I knew it I had such a warmth of God in my Heart and SOul and do not recall much after, I was right off to a deep sleep. what a wonderful way to have fallen asleep. It reminds me of the time you were studying so intensely and asked the Lord for rest,and you said it was one of the most refreshing sleeps you have ever had. It reminded me of this.
            Thank you so much for sharing and connecting
            I will keep you posted this week

          • Sandra,
            Yes, that was one of the defining moments of my life and faith…when I was so totally exhausted and things were extremely rough, to have the Lord simply lead me to rest and not more “learning” or “studying”. It is vital for our lives to have rest and play as well as other things that you are involved with; I applaud your desire for balance. You have a LOT on your plate too; you are very mindful and that is also a rare quality in one who has endured so much pain. Just ask the Lord to help you take that in and not waver with it…it is difficult to accept complements or hear things about us that don’t resonate within ourselves but that is another reason we need others close to us in life. Yes, the interview went out on Tuesday…I wonder if you got it. If not you should have so here’s the link. They will encourage you as Joni and Ken are two of the most incredible people; hard, hard lives to endure but God has entrusted them with much and He is faithful. I hope to hear what you think if you have time to catch some or all of it. Have a blessed and peaceful day my friend. Colleen Link: http://specialneeds.iflblog.com/2014/10/how-you-can-keep-running-and-finish-well/

          • Hello Colleen, It is wonderful to hear read your thoughts, so precise and this note touches on so much , what a powerful message i am gathering for myself at so many levels of awareness. Just the sentence that “it is difficult to accept complements or hear things about us that don’t resonate within ourselves but that is another reason we need others close to us in life”. that alone from reading the most wonderful of books “Hiding From Love”, so many awarenesses and on the very top of books for it is real, and so much of what you have mentioned with developmental stages and this book covers all .I just love the author ,so gentle with reality . I always thought Carolyn Mase?spelling? was one of my favorite reads, she is a medical intuitive and one of the first books that began opening me to awareness of self. I would find medical intution a passion as my attunement with Reiki I seem to have strong visual intuitive nature and see and feel in color messages or energies that are present if hands on practice that i have experienced. My intention was someday when clear and “free” maybe utilize this. Back to you note, I did not receive the link for Joni and Ken so I will go ahead and view that early evening here and I would lvoe to share my thoughts with you as well. Even with the “Hiding From Love”, it is late when i read and with flashlight in my bed. lol, i read now with reading glasses from Walmart, lol…..I read and there at the time there are things I would also like to discuss with you and truly need jot down my thoughts so do not pass. I know I am on the boundary chapter. There is just so much! I will say that it is delightful that you have encouraged this book as well for it is truly the most helpful in books at this time, as you said for yourself, it is pivotal for me and my growth. Just at the best time when it helps with all my confusion of what is happening to me..I am so grateful. And for your connection Colleen!
            I did want to mention I had a Reiki session today ,I was very stuck energy and physically, and that with some massage brings me in even more awareness and I will purge/release as nite and next few days go by I know…….I wanted to share, interesting as it is I had mentioned some of this intuition in this note already,this I want to share is that when I do have Reiki session my visions are strong and whether color or images or messages come to me…..I wanted to share with you that for several years during a Reiki session I appeared as an Angel in the room in minds eye (my eyes closed and not talking/just resting during session)…..and this Angel has been in corner of room sometimes over me and other times I simply see that I only had one working wing, and I would be trying to fly and today the very first time I saw no broken wing anymore….and this time she/I was so enormous, I filled the room and could feel there was no more room anymore in this room?, I was told that this was growth and I will need a bigger box now.LOL…I was delighted to see this…I also saw with my minds eye that little baby crying so fiercely and hysterically left at hospital twice as such a young newborn baby(this is true in my life as no memory phyisically I have seen this image in meditation and Reiki before) and believe it or not I was amazed that when my right foot at solar plexus reflexology spot I could feel it providng the nurturing love that I so needed and I could literally feel it in my solar plexus receiving what I “needed” in this memory/developmental stage. It was really amazing how good it felt. I know these are feelings, I have not totally grasped all that learning yet with what we have spoken of regarding feelings. I did print out for the Reiki Master and me a copy of one of the PDF List of emotions. Through Me Colleen you are helping me help a friend that has emotional blockage of own. By your efforts, it is truly amazing with my awareness of how you and I have connected by the work of God and then me I do believe in another life to share and reflect on another, it is truly miraculous. I believe you have been the greatest gift of grace by God in my life in almost 50 years. .Thank you so much.
            I wanted to say after I did see the baby crying and recieing what was simply a spot on my foot yet a tremendous comfort during a massage for this very specific emotion. After this the vision was amazing that I could see myself as a child just sitting in my living room here that is in such disrepair and knees up against my chest and my arms folded around them as i just was ever so calm, relaxed and sitting peering out the window of my house that gets the most beauitful sunshine from west side in afternoon,and I had a feeling of how do I do this now,fix me, and then it came to it will fix itself with God guidance and plan,no reason for me to “think” so hard to fix me, in vision I was without anxiety and simply “Waiting” for what and how this is to come together. It took me to tears. from minds eye i saw me as child sitting there, adolescent sitting there and mature woman sitting there and then standing…then back to child just sitting …all same seating position just different sizes of development. So much in all of that. I was so aware that this is why my house is the way it is, my life,etc, I look so forward to healing this Colleen, to be so free. My Reiki Master stated maybe I am no longer broken! with wing no longer broken….now I look forward to God appearing with guidance for helping me further. I will do exactly as you have expressed here, “Just ask the Lord to help you take that in and not waver with it…I am so very grateful for your understanding and graceful acceptance and wisdom as I always mention. It is always difficult for me to grasp that i am so rare, I know no other way is an interesting feeling….I guess never thought I had any other choice to live on. I Thank you for complementing me with this, I believe we both have endured at some level where we connect so well and with such understanding and patience and caring friendship. I am inspired by your creativity and maybe that too God has placed before me for me to embrace that part within me as you say it is so important in “balance”. Even with so many expenditures before me,and narrow budget in place,and my Dr. has not telephoned with any cancellations, I had not found anything specific as to groups for counseling on the Christian websites,,,,,I think I will look up more meet up groups to do things that are positive togheter/Christian groups locally or in Congaree Natl Forrest 50 minutes away…..well sorry that is so long winded, with all that I decided to make another appt for Reiki next week , I know God will provide and I know that having appointments a week apart will help me heal more than if I wait another month…so I did this….. (I am praying to God for help with this,and like my leak repair of 35.00, I am certain He will provide and I have no worries,yet to be smart is difficult with so many needs)
            I enjoyed your thoughts and our connection. I guess it is time for me to expand a little as you have been encouraging with facebook, maybe not facebook but somehow another means of people like you Colleen.
            Thank you, and again I will share my Gratitude with God in prayer for you and your family Blessings.
            Be well this October evening! I hope you are enjoying the weather and you and Jon too together and with family and your Shephard coming in too to enjoy in the beauty of Fall Season playful outdoors or on your porch if have one or deck, please do enjoy yourselves there.
            My best thoughts always,

          • Sandra,
            So much you are learning it’s quite amazing. There are times when it will be full and can experience God in abundant ways; cling to such seasons because they will get you through those ‘dry’ seasons when you wonder if God is present at all. There is a purpose in all things; one of the purposes in experiencing God’s presence is to be packed away in your heart…when you feel low, you recall these experiences and can KNOW, BELIEVE, count on God’s faithfulness because He is unchanging…how the enemy love to camp on our feelings when we are low or in doubt. However, just at you have experienced His presence NOW, you may not FEEL His presence in future moments but that does not mean He is absent. It simply means you are vacant for some reason…a loss, sorrow, lonely, something in the human condition is blocking you from FEELING Christ but that is not an indication of His unfaithfulness…it’s that we are growing deeper and sometimes those roots grow in very dark places. So I celebrate with you this note and what you have enjoyed. Tuck it deeply into your heart for GOD is at work always. Your dear sister in Christ, Colleen

          • Hello Colleen, yes I have been what feels like nurturing some very deep, of maybe deepest wounds. Thank you for post, and embracing our connection with such warmth and joy. that is a delight to me to know. I will look for other marriage post on Joni and Ken, they are tremendous partners and with such struggle they are ever so committed in truest of companionship and committment, so remarkable. I seem to be doing what you mention here, past few days I have known Christ is so near and just where I am not able to fully experience Him as I had just before I pushed Him away….I recall those very moments He stood before me and I heard Him ever so clearly and saw the most magnificent Light before me surrounding His presence and I hold onto that, praying that He keep me with Him and continue to help me even during my most confused moments and where I cannot hear or see Him, that He continue to care for me and help me receive His Love again, and help me no matter what. I keep praying on this right now. I am so confused with messages, yet I know He is there and it will make sense again. I enjoyed all of your posts and I am grateful. I did begin a practice from the meditation course that I had viewed online, to include three words to repeat while in meditation…..”compassion, gratitude, joy”, sit with each word and have the energy enter ever cell of body,mind ,spirit. It was helpful this morning as I was awakening to focus on each word until I could feel throughout my body the positive energy.
            Thank you for your thoughts and encouragement. and you are so very welcome for the thoughts i had shared from you and Jon conversation of holding hand on heart and asking Jesus what He thinks…..enjoy your moments together. I will look forward to connecting again soon.
            WIth Gratitude

          • Hello Colleen, I am speechless with your interview with Joni and Ken! first tears, then I was not certain I could continue at 1/4 way through, I kept viewing and glad that i did. What an amazing couple, Joni and Ken. There are simply no words, she is higher functioning than myself and parapeligic, where did she ever meeet such a gem of a man for husband, so inspiring really at so many different levels for me. I seem to have fit in,where what I experience and I have shared with you is real, Jesus does speak to more than myself and all of us, and those that choose Jesus connection and relationship will know this very Truth. I am amazed at this couple committment and vulnerability and each comes to the other rescue in “what is the big picture”, what genuine remarkable Souls that have come together in their shared journey. I think what I need settle in my gut is my fear of the reality of this interview from the very beginning ,how Joni prayer was heard and something tragic happened to give her what she asked God for, and then how amazing she is!!! and ENDURES so Gracefullly…………that I wish to sit with. And her smile and laughter and JOY that comes from a very deep place and that with her husband is so treasured,and cherished,and shared so mutually.
            Thank you for encouraging me to see this video. I am in awe how God works Colleen, and in these circumstances of physical disability. And her prayer so awesome, If I am not going to die, please show me how to live….I think I need learn from her there, and I seem to be at that crossroad of truly relying on God now to answer my prayer of ok if this is where I am, please show me how to pick it all up developmentally and live ,what is my very next step I can take to move me that next step toward joy and peace even as I visualize myself sitting on a floor that is particle board and greatly stained from what came through carpet of mildrew and stains from a pet prior to my moving in……I can look out the window at the Light of Jesus just as Joni Painting so remarkable reflects the Light of Jesus shining down upon Earth and she paints with her teeth!!!! another Amazing awe,speechless.
            I can go on and one, how real, how true, their hearts are of the Lord and it shows so hugely.
            I did want to say that you look terific Colleen, I hope you are well as you mentioned in video with need for balance. I truly do not know how you do all you do, you too the Olympian!!! at home and for all those you have connected with on your Special Needs BLog, you are amazing too! Please take good care ,maybe you will enjoy the gogi berry scrub I mentioned and even if for hands it feels so wonderful ,just a little something to soothe. I look forward to connecting again…there is so much good to come away with…..focus on Jesus is what I bring home tonite, And truly to continue work on not fearing God but to feel His embrace no matter what.
            Have a truly Blessed evening.,

          • My dear Sandra,
            Ken and Joni reveal to us all that life is entirely difficult, our dependence is upon God who give us breath in our lungs and forgiveness and grace to move forward with hope and truth. In the first interview I did with them, you will need to hear their story…how hard it was for Ken to press on for so many years with her condition. There is no ideal relationship; but with God, we have hope! Their book on marriage is one of the most authentic, real, honest, open works I have ever read on marriage. It was and is a hard road for them; as it is for us all because we are all broken people. No one can make us happy or satisfy our longings for heaven while living on this earth. However, with Christ as our guide and His word as our foundation, all relationships can make it. I’m so glad you watched them…now married almost 30 years…what a testimony. I hope you have time at some point to see their interview on marriage…it was done last year. Thank you for your continued support and care; you are a treasure. I love our connection and so delight is seeing Christ grow you in the most unbelievable ways. Colleen

          • Hello Colleen, one other thought I wanted to express was that I adore how you talk to Jon and show him his heart and direct his conversation with the Lord so gracefully with hand on his heart is remarkable and that you are such a wonderful Mom! May I be so Blessed to meet someone like those who have a relationship with Jesus Christ , as you, your family, Joni and Ken share with greatest of Love.
            From the Heart,

          • Sandra,
            You are so kind to send this note. I have grown into who I am with my children and in life; it has not been because of my strength but due to my dependence upon Christ. Just as He provides the grace and peace for me to press on, so it fills me with the ability to give to my son and to others. It really is about being emptied on every level; thus filled by Christ. I so appreciate your notice of this…how kind of you to connect and communicate this to my heart. Thank you. Colleen

          • Hello Colleen, I am not sure it was my time to watch video interview last nite, I seemed to have needed to come back to it another time. My depression spiralled last nite into this morning, it may have been too much to hear Joni story right in now. As outstanding she and Ken are,and their hope and inspiration shared, it hurts too much. I lost all hope for moment. I talk to Jesus but I am not sure it is He that answers the answer or my mind? I am praying to lesson the confustion so I see clearly it is He who speaks and when that is Him. I seem to have great visions and find there is no where to expand without feeling go out alone, drive a distance, taht is the expansion of my network of people and those wings that once again feel so stuck for all the waiting for how and what in answer to do next, I am lacking joyand the wonderful scale of balance.

          • Sandra,
            Here is a wonderful example of how we must cling to our experiences with Christ in our lives…sometimes we will indeed wonder if He is really present, if our beliefs are founded upon a solid rock of truth, if our hopes are in line with His truth….all of our feelings may say otherwise, but they must be harnessed in the truth. Since God cannot be changing in Character, it is our human condition that ebbs and flows. When it does, the enemy goes to work, using out feelings as tools that can be so deceptive. Honestly, I have said out loud sometime… “Thank you for this doubt, frustration, whatever….for I am taking it all to my heavenly Father, Jesus Christ my Lord!” The enemy hates this but it is what we must do when our feelings are scattered. Begin to practice this…I consistently say this when my feelings are low or I’m depressed…our feelings come and go but GOD is our foundation. Stay true to the course my dear one. In His strength, Colleen

          • Hello Colleen, I wanted to come back to this post and mention that I did write this down. This is so much where I am this weekend, without listening to the voices I am hearing unless I hear the Truth and know it is God.It is such a troubling feeling when it is so uncertain and nothing making sense of who to listen to , I will know when it is God. I will wait as difficult as this is for me on all levels.
            Thank you,

          • Sandra,
            I just read both your notes and wanted to mention that one of the ways we know God is speaking to us is that He is never confusing. The enemy is confusing and wants us to feel confused but God is not going to offer mixed messages. It may be wonderful for you to use your meditation…I loved those words by the way….and to think of your time with Christ not as another thing to “do” but just to be in the moment. Sit with scripture, read maybe a Psalm or a passage from the New testament; maybe a couple Proverbs and just sit with the words. Let them fill your spirit like you do with meditation…in fact, Psalm 1 talks about meditating on scripture day and night and the result is that we are firmly planted and our foundation is sturdy. Life is simplified when scripture is our source of strength and truth. It’s so easy to get it complicated with lots of other messages…stick to the truth and you will find things simplify. Again, the relationship with our Lord is one that evolves, grows, changes, and takes time. It’s not something to accomplish but to enjoy and find comforting. Like a warm pair of socks on a cold night…comforting and calming. Hope that helps my friend. You are one special lady. It’s always good to hear from you! Colleen

          • Thank you so much for your encouragement and such kindness. yes, that is what i believed with mixed messages that just were not feeling absolute as I have known Jesus to stand before me and speak. I was asking a question as you did with Jon, what does Jesus think, I may have already been scattered and then it was not Jesus I knew by the confusion that set in by what coming to me and it was simply not consistent with what i know and I know I would feel so certain if it was. So I will wait for Him, and read as you said. I had been so comforted before I was overwhelmed and pushed Jesus away what now seems like a month ago. He is so beautiful and the Light like nothing ever experienced, so I look forward to receiving Him again with His helping me be so open again. I know He will come to me as He did, and I will know it is Him. I like “like a warm pair of socks on a cold night”, wonderful! I had just read Romans Chapter 8 and I was getting the comfort I needed. I will read as you say Psalm 1 and continue on this thought of compassion, gratitude and joy, and focus on the Lord with my Heart and SOul in doing and reading Proverbs and Psalm.I am glad you enjoyed. I will look forward to sharing my thoughts with my reading.
            I also may read the “Hiding from Love” again when finsihed. I may need to put down for a few nites as I need that balance,maybe Psalm 1 and Proverbs will provide me the comfort and creativivity and Joy I pray for to truly know and bring into my Heart to balance my intention of growth and wellness. I wanted to also ask if you know the name of Patsy Clairmont? workbook you had mentioned is good?
            Thank you for your warmth, wisdom and encouragement always,

          • Sandra,
            Oh my gosh…the Lord has His loving arms all around you…protecting, guiding, caring, and supporting. Yes, I know of Patsy Clairmont….in fact, I interviewed her already for our 2015 interview series and hers is to air in February. She is magnificent!!! Absolutely love all she has done and continues to do. Sandra, she was so afraid to leave her home, her bedroom in fact….and God brought her though and continues to bring her through all of life’s fears and hardships. She is one incredible lady; I recommend all her works. This is how I know God is present…our paths have never crossed in person but the sharing of thoughts and ideas has been continually on the same level. From books, people, interests, involvements, understandings of psychological and emotional issues, hobbies….only God could be providing such a path of healing for you and in ways, for me as well. While I was in the most difficult periods of life, I wondered what on earth God was doing. Now I see His work in other’s lives as what He has transformed in me is passed along. And, I have so far to go. So as we all learn and grow, there is a greater purpose….that is clarity at its finest. God is leading you, just stay the course with peace. No hurry, just peace as He is abiding in and with you. Thanks for connecting as always. There is such wonderful delight in connecting with another who is on a growth path. You are precious. Have a blessed evening. Colleen

          • Hi Colleen
            I know of Patsy Clairmont by your sharing with me back maybe a month. I was lpoking forward to the feb interview and you had encouraged a workbook? By her. I know you have written so much vsluable information. it was not something I could locate. I found her books.blog.wonderful porch meeting.yes what a cool amazing lady. Please if u remember workbook suggestion I would love to know .thank you for encouragement .I so much appreciate how you understand so well by your experience. And how Patsy so much aligned with another journey close to my fear of being out thereand how both of you finding such glorious rich lives in Christ working in you with full intention of purpose for your being able to reach out with such great caring love and wisdom the way you both do so fullywith His work of shaping ypu.thankt you for sharing with me.Sandra

          • Hello Colleen, I am having challenging day ,ever so much. I did blog with the Wayne Stiles forgiveness, it began as wonderful experience….then back to a guilt feeling that I am not being as all Loving as God would, that is why I am best not taking in too many opinions . Keep it simple with GOd, when I hear His message clearly only then I will act .And I have a Pshycologist and you Colleen that know so much about development and psycology….then I am being dissed by this gutter person that I was so thrilled having found ,price had been most fair on market and then he suddenlly stopped taking my calls, I may drive down to location,although it has been last week and I gave him yesterday as holiday and called today to have him no answer again and no response to my now two voicemails. I am so forever waiting. I am going to park to walk, hugely keeping the breathing going but wanting to bubble over.
            Have a truly Blessed Day, I will go to bed if nothing I can do about any of this later.

          • Sandra,
            I am so sorry the house troubles continue….that is SO frustrating!!!! I don’t have an answer for that but I do know it’s been tough and that’s got to be getting to you. And the enemy would love to have it get to you so maybe let’s think about laying off the projects you can let go of for a while…not forever and certainly not the ones you have to get done to live (like the bugs and stuff). But if there are things you can leave undone, clear your mind then come back to them later, it will help your perspective. Also, you mentioned “not being as all loving as God”…welcome to the universe! None of us are “all” we were created to be because we are fallen, sinful, broken people. Developmentally, you were affirmed by behaving a certain way; in God’s economy, it’s not that way at all. We are already loved, accepted, treasured because HE chooses that…there is not anything we can say or do to change how God feels about us. Since His love is perfect, and He has chosen to love us all, then His love for you is perfect regardless of your behavior. Of course, when we choose to do things that hurt ourselves and others, the Lord is grieved, but it does not change His tender loving care for you ever. Roman 7…Paul is writing about how he continually goes back to his human ways…..I do what I don’t want to do again and again….then Romans 8 Paul affirms but there is nothing that can separate us from the love of Christ Jesus our Lord. I say all this to encourage you to let go of the expectations you hold for yourself. There is a term “Introject” used in psychology which means as we grow up, those who speak to us have a ‘voice’ in our lives and we take that voice in and talk to ourselves in the same way. If one is raised with a lot of “should” and “ought’s”, then as adults, they quickly default to “I should…” or “I ought…” when really, that is not God’s voice. His voice is “You are loved, be still and know that I am God, I am your Shepherd, I am your refuge, I am your hope”…HE is everything and we can just be. I will look up some workbooks on this subject as I think your inner voice is pretty harsh and critical towards yourself. That is why I did suggest adopting an animal…because you would never think of treating an animal with harshness….especially a hurt animal. The same is true for you…you have to learn how to speak kindness to yourself rather than strict rules and ever-increasing expectations. Anyway, as you walk, ask the Lord to bring His words to you. Ask Him to help you be kind to yourself, to be gentle and tender to yourself…that is what our good Shepherd is for us. I hope this makes sense. Be at peace my dear sister, and just rest in His care. Colleen

          • Hello Colleen.I am on smartphone just arrived at park.thank you for supportive encouragement. I do believe this all toll on me.I wanted pick up chairs in kitchen and throw and thought to just hit all on table across room.I am honest in saying I am very angry. I am now sitti g here crying for only the Lord all loving at moment. Not many can understand and accept such intensity I feel for this contracter ignoring my calls..the wayne stile blog lack of words for such hardship of soul. I know you embrace me Colleen. I can say anythi g and you do not judge.
            So undrrstanding and caring u are.I just madly drove 45 minutes to where contracter address stated online…I finally found it in bad areano nobody there..I imagine in field of gutters and siding.office obviosly not a regular meeting place. Probably just material pickup. I called number 5 times still no answer.before last week he answered my calls. I know God gives only what we can handle but I am not being able take much more of this. So your message clear and I will take care in hearing rest awhile. I prayed since weekend for joy come to my heart and continue. Tomorrow supposed to have reiki again and I feeling angry..reiki master does not handle anger well …it makes me feel shunned so now I willneed see how feeling. I am going walk. Thank you for thoughts and I will rest when home. Sandra

          • Sandra,
            Of course you are angry…I would say maybe mad as hell right now because life has not made sense and the harder you have tried, complication has continued. There are ways of getting out the anger…I encourage you to do any of these exercises…Target has boxing stands in different shapes and sizes…get some cheap boxing gloves or just put socks on your hands and hit the way out of a bad. You can also hit your mattress, scream into a pillow, just stomp and kick and hit stuff that won’t hurt you or others but releases the energy you have bound up inside. Anger is full of energy, it has to be released or it does affect our liver functions I recently learned. There is righteous anger; anger that Christ had at the temple money collectors who were so dishonest and full of themselves He went in and flipped the tables upside down….now that’s some anger right there for ya. What you have endured is terribly angering; as you get healthier, anger about it all will surface because it’s maddening…it was all wrong. It’s almost like a temper tantrum you were never allow to throw…go ahead and give it a whirl. Kick boxing, running, active hard physical exertion is vital to get it out. As you do, space will open up in you and there will be room for peace. You will be exhausted but it has to get out. You will be okay, you will feel a release as you let go and are in a contained yet out of control kind of way. You have probably never allowed yourself to be ‘out of control’…Sandra, it’s okay to lose it as long as other’s are not injured. Let the release of emotion bring you into His peace; stay connected and know I love you and care for you and believe in you. Colleen

          • Colleen , I jsut wrote you the longest note….I even looked at it and thought I have not needed to copy and paste lately…..oh please this day. It disappeared and I had so mcuh expressed. For tontie please know I am so very grateful for your guidance and acceptance . It is you and my Dr. that embrace anger and help me be okay with it enough to let it go ,even if out of control is just a feeling during time. I had just written that lately I am knowing that it is okay to let this control loose to releive me of such pain. I appreciate greatly that I will be okay. I will write more of what written in previous post lost for another time. Maybe God did not want me to leave so much for you to read and energy that I need deal with too, patterns of the male figures that were self serving rather than respectful, loving and kind hearted, and without acknowledgement of my needs as whole self,aggressive when I tried to change the pattern for my wellbeing, abandonment,etc, and seemingly into now so many gapping wounds are being poked at to perhaps release just this anger. The anger came up in Reiki last week and I was told much energy was placed into liver to cleanse the male anger I am having surface. And I also wanted to share a minds eye vision the day after the session of Reiki, I was feeling the energy and absorbing in restful state all next day and like I so much did not want to let it go as was helping me with sadness connection and then I felt very nautious and sick to stomach.With minds eye i saw a blackest of black skeleton coming out of mouth and I visually pulled it out and the bottom half remained stuck. Just as you said here that iit is exhausting, I recall thinking I just did not have what it would take to get rest out. I know it has something to do with the way I am beginning express what cannot remain hidden emotion. I will look for punching bag and /or too kick boxing. I almost kicked a bag of clothing in plastic bag before left for park. I will remember that what you said about JEsus and that this expression need be released for wellness and finally Peace! I keep and will keep saying I am glad I am frustrated, so very angry and deeply sad with discouragement as I am handing all to My Heavenly Father, My Lord Jesus Christ….as I keep repeating continously and at park I did too I felt Jesus energy flowing through my arms and body. That is all I can do for now. I will keep you posted on new punching bag and getting this out of me . And keep reading Psalms and what will comfort me. I did also mention in post lost that the book “Hiding from Love” discusses the healthy withdrawl and isolation that I am experiencing with making the changes and withdrawing for preserving my whole self in relationships that i know would suck too much energy ,those that are self serving male familly members that I am receiving judgement from for being distant by telephone, and the book gives me permission. As book states it is better be honest,although from my experience truth and comprehension does not come that easy in my family, so I have grappled with wanting to be truthful with a brother but he has history of being dominant /aggressive and putting blame guilt out there. So I wait on our Lord in all.My brother interestingly has become alot like my father, the pattern of wife not being emotionally supportive and each coming to me for that fulfillment. It does create anger from an old wound. I am sorry for sounding less than kind , I know that you know my attempt is to break a pattern for my whole wellbeing and God conscious Joy and Peace in functional relationships of same,and to withdraw I know you too know that is part of my healing process. I can only change myself and so like you say making every and all attempts. I will read more Psalm tonite to connect with God comfort, and find direction.Thank you for sharing Jesus anger in Bible. I had not known this truth. Thank You for your acceptance to allow me to heal openly and move forward in His Peace and Joy.
            Thank you so much
            Have a good evening, glad you connected with me, and I did ask last post lost too that if you made the shrug in video interview with Joni and Ken, the black one, I know you like to sew. I thought of that and have had on mind to ask about it .It was lovely addition /accessory, unique and creative.
            Enjoy your evening,
            with Gratitude

          • Hello Colleen, I wanted to share two things tonite. Jesus has spoken to me in that throught your thoughts with kick boxing and punching bag, it came to me what I will do for my 50th bday, I wish to look at a trampolene for back deck or yard in back that I can be “out of control” in functional constructive way. I will still work at releasing anger sooner like over next few days punching bag or kick boxing idea? I wanted to share that I recalled this center in Columbia, 50 minutes west where there is a type of yoga center with specific type of trampoline and I was told over year ago about and that i can pay 10-12 day to just go and join in trampline excersice. I am seriously considering and that expansion where i have felt stuck in box not knowing where God wanted me to go to expand, I do not go to bars and out at nite, so this is one way he has seemingly comforted me with idea. I have been struggling with pray of what to do for my bday not being answered and coming so quickly,Dec. and coupon came to me by email for place i stay in Hots Springs,NC and it is 98.00 for two nites , i thought okay that is where Jesus is leading me, then saw the use not to be in holiday dates as my bday between Christmas and New Years Day. I said to self okay then that is not it. Well by your Grace of acceptance of my emotional imbalance here, your guidance by God to help others in struggle and need, there it was. If I go to Hot Springs another date and time before Christmas maybe , I can always go to this yoga center for my Bday and /or even buy my own Trampoline if not crazy expensive. I am not sure of all, but I know the energy is flowing for what can reallly truly help me over holdiays and monumental bday, I would like it to be special. It is 50! I will keep praying and find what direction taken. I too wanted to mention that i understand what you are saying with dog, I do have a stray cat I feed and pet outside, she is sweet. I am going to get a back scratcher to pet her with,she loves to be scratched. Thank you for care and wisdom always,
            I am Grateful for God leading me to your blog and to You Colleen.
            With Gratitude to God

          • Sandra,
            Your thoughts are fantastic. Yes, you need to celebrate your 50th in a memorable way…you have grown more in the last few years than probably many will in a lifetime. You need to celebrate your choice to grow, to do the hard things, choosing the higher ground, making life work by refocusing and reframing what has not helped you in the past. These are monumental celebrations! Plus, there is only one YOU so that alone is a celebration. I think your idea of the trampoline is great as well as kick boxing. There are many second hand places you can find exercise equipment….Amazon, EBay, Way fair, Play it Again Sports, local newspapers as people are often selling stuff they don’t use anymore. So there are affordable things out there if you look around a little. As you enter the holiday season and your birthday season, make a list of all the changes you see in yourself…just keep it with you so when you celebrate, you will have a tangible, memorable item that speaks to how wonderful you are. It may be something you want to frame even. If you can’t think of much, just re-read our notes and write down the things I’ve noticed or what your therapist or Reiki friend has told you. As you take in this list, you will begin to believe it and it will affect your attitude and actions in so many positive ways. I’m thrilled for you and can’t wait to add to your list. Colleen

          • Hello Colleen, What a terific note to come home to this afternoon. I will begin this list over next few days and over weekend, as I am beginning to see changes although it seemingly is stronger coming from you, my Dr. and Reiki Master too. And I will keep praying to exactly how God wants me to spend those hours of my Bday. Would it be terific to be near dogs, lol, I am serious though,and as you have mentioned it helps me take better care of me while sharing unconditional love to an animal….maybe some type of animal? it just occured to me, maybe there is a place even if not on my Bday but for this season to begin dog walking for a neighbor or seeing how I can connect to these cherished furry friends to take away that aloneness…..and nurture myself during the holidays and bday…..maybe someone going away and I can even take a dog in for a short time? Just an idea. I asked years back at SPCA locally and they do not take volunteers there for a liability. Just came to mind. Thank you for such supportive note and excitement to help me plan my special day too with idea of list as positive reinforcement of all I have chosen and accepted to make these changes for ultimate wellness and a life filled with the Joy and Peace of Jesus Christ…I thought, If Patsy Clairmont had her front porch visit nearby, that would be such a joy filled day too…..I saw that on her website, so inviting and friendly. so warm and amazing joy too. I would agree that you both have the empathy, compassion, and brilliant personalities, each unique and creative in own way by God’s hands, both of you shaped to perform such amazing works , sharing yourselves so unconditionally with so many individuals, familly and friends, to inspire, love and care, offer wisdom and grace…..I find I am more and more generating the positive energy just thinking of how joyous your soul and someone as Patsy is…..It is true and healing that Love does multiple and change others! Especially from those who are God Conscious Christians. I am finding there are most Evangelical Ministries and Churches in California and Texas? Is this true? And the book’Hiding from Love” , the Dr. Townshend? and others have their clinic and also Evangelical Christians.
            I hope you are well Colleen. I wanted to say that, for an intuition that I picked up in your messages/interviews reaching out in so many different directions to be ever so present in the lives of others. I so much will have you in my prayers along with your family and Shepherd too.
            I did have Reiki session, yes, I arrived filled with anger I was keeping inside, and Reiki Master said he did alot of liver work for I came in with holding onto so much anger…I did envision the release of what i had not the energy for last week to finish, and I had another visiual of a cord coming out of my mouth, he said that could be the umbilical cord like that and that there is alot of growth with that release…….and I saw for very very first time my wings as an Angel so connected and this time I soared ever so high and was a part of the sky with brightest shining stars and Light. I need stay grounded tonite and I know I will release more over next few days. I will be looking forward to the trampoline,letting go and having fun even in my own back yard, and certainly the kick boxing and punchign bag I will have handy to further release. I am so happy that you can relate and so very accepting of all emotions, you are truly amazing and I know you are aware, although I want you to know from me that I am able to do this in such a free’er sense knowing this and it is so okay to let go and release the bottled up emotion of anger so constructively and healthy…Thank you so much.
            I keep praying and handing all over to My heavenly Father, My Lord Jesus Christ….and COlleen, I have to say, when I read Bible it is not the way you so eloquently voice it. For me, listening to you and how you describe what may not be as clear to me as I read, you take exactly what is written and as I say eloquently voice and like a Hymn to my ears it is so ever peaceful and gentle and filled with Grace.
            I am Grateful for your sharing all you have. In the other post so much of Jesus anger, I am amazed I somehow did not gather as you have so well, I know you have had a lifetime with your Dad and such a foundation that does shine of brilliance in your teaching. I am so Grateful for your knowledge and wisdom and sharing in our posts what I can then understand so well and feel so comforted by oh that is it….As Paul, I get confused in reading ,and it was not until you shared what he was truly saying and the word sunk in as oh, that is it! ANd I am suddenly feeling as though I literally am fitting into the Truth of what is so Real in the Bible and Jesus is good example of His emotion in the Temple. I am inspired to read more of this and will go over your note again to be sure I have all written down to explore further and truly gather in my heart and soul what it is saying.
            Thank you Colleen, I am so happy we connected .Be well, and do let me know if you sewed your shrug, so sweet and creative, just as I see you from video. Speaking of which, I thougth during my walk, idea alert………I want to get a big piece of canvas or sheet or something like education brown roll paper??? and throw paint up at, to release anger yet in the most beautiful way, as I am an artist, this may pave way to more art when settle down and /or feel the paint and fill that space that first was anger with joy and inspriiation….I wanted to share this with you. Michaels always has sales 40%-50% off or as you say all kinds of options open like this. I also will consider a class of some kind, I took a pottery class just as I was getting divorced, they are expensive,althought these are thoughts i have to expand and help balance what I am releasing and help me grow ….
            Have a wonderful evening, crisp and cool with sunshine after much rain last nite, hope you have same Fall evening of clear and crisp temperatures there….How can I forget so sorry note so long, but I wanted to share that when I went to Reiki appt mid morning today, I seemed desperate and asked if he would call the gutter contracter and see if he returns his call……He did! so that meant he has ignored mine last week and this week, so my Reiki Master recieved the voicemail this afternoon to call him back and set up time to take look at job, so he did not give my name nor is aware that Reiki Master is going call him back tomorrow and say I was working with getting the gutters and I was feeling forgotten??? He is very good communicater so I know he will handle in a way that could be very helpful to me and in gentle manner let this guy know to follow up with me….He is going to talk with him for me. The gutter contracter does not recall Reiki Master ,but that is who referred me to gutter contracter, Reiki Master had him price gutters and install gutters 5-6 years back and was happy with his work …..so he was going to mention as a business person he accepts referrals from other business people and how he refers people like myself to other businesses, kind of how helping each other……we will see……The thought is that my job is small and little money in that but still I have need as anyone else, so we will see what contracter says and why he has not responded and if he will respond now with this call….I simply was having the thought that the male energy may help me get my gutters as was intended with this particular and best fair price contracter.
            I will let you know how that goes tomorrow when Reiki Master calls him back for me.
            Goodnite Colleen, Take good care,and give your dog a hug for me!!!
            Best regards and With Gratitude always for our friendship, and sisterhood of Jesus Christ

          • Hello Colleen
            I read Romans 7 before bed and for the very first time I could relate to Paul
            I understoodd. Thank you for sharing this with me as you have. Where can I find in Bible where Jesus was angry? I pray the gutter person returns my call as such good priice. Please God show me he followed through for me and guttet order. I will offer a cedar atmpore to another contracter…he had mentioned how much hr liked cedar when saw mine. It on ebay broken same o e and it is 375. My cedar wardrobe I will say 600. and see if contractet do two300.00 quotef jobs he gave
            I do not mind bartering with this antiwue cedar wardrobe.may b helping. Have a good evening

          • Sandra,
            Yes, in fact, it is recorded in all the gospels…Matthew 21:12-17, Mark 11:15-19, Luke 19:45-48, and John 2:14-15. Some commentators suggest this event happened twice; once recorded in Matthew, Mark, and Luke; then another time in John. Others suggest it was the same event. Either way, the cleansing of the temple was an enormous event because the temple was the center of all religious and family events….it was to be holy. Isaiah 56: 7b says of the temple “My Temple will be called a house of prayer for all nations”; and as Christ walked into the large temple areas and saw the acts of deceit, bribery, greed, and more it was appalling. In fact, this link connects to Bible Hub where you can read from various commentators about the event. Christ had righteous indignation, was fully outraged to see the people using the temple-the place of holy reverence-for human, selfish, deceit. While it was controlled anger, it was a statement of absolute disgust which is how we are to view deceit and sin. (http://biblehub.com/matthew/21-12.htm) Hope this helps as you sort through your own anger against wrongs you have endured. Colleen

          • Hello Colleen, I know I mentioned this in last post, Thank You so very much, this is truly amazing knowledge with tremendous wisdom to help me expand my awareness and meaning of the Truth in this word, and find the comfort in such painful emotion and necessary to release. I am so happy to read about this cleansing.and can I say that it brings to mind “our body is our temple”, in ways of my own cleansing as whole self for I shall become holy.
            I am amazed by this scripture and will read more on the link of Bible hub and help me sort through this anger that perculates and becomes only one need and that is release in healthy emotion /constructive adult way.
            Thank you

          • Hello Colleen, I have been viewing and thinking alot of this post, so much information that is so real and true and full of such comfort ,,,,,it validates that anger is okay , I realized that although I knew that it took until now to truly realize that i was so shut down to not feel these feelings, to accept whatever it was from “authority” that was given,good,bad,or ugly and not to speak up ever. When I did I was shunned, a terible person, even if what truth I spoke was wrong and true that it was wrong. Pretty amazing really, so I Thank You for this comfort by sharing your wisdom with me. I have completely normal reactions really to all these experiences that you have detailed with Jesus reaction to what He had seen.
            I also wanted to share so far my Reiki Master only had that one return call from gutter contracter asking he call back with address so he could come look,,,,when in fact Reiki Master calling for me , contracter does not know this, and Reiki Master has called another 3 times with messages for contracter after that first call and contracter has not returned any of these. Reiki Master sees this issue and he will leave voicemail tomorrow now with an actual message stated from one business owner to another that he left numerous messages and his client(me) he referred has not had any return calls after it was agreed he would put in gutters and priced ….and he is very good communicater so I know it will be firm yet appropriate ….and he said if he then still gets no call , he knows alot of people in higher places that are his clients too that would know this person and would question just the right individuals regarding whether know this contracter,and to mention experience….Reiki Master speaks very well, so this will be very good from him as he has a very good business reputation and very professional ,so he will be heard..
            I just wanted to let you know what was happening with this.
            Thank you,

          • Hello Colleen , Reiki Master left voicemail with gutter contracter this am stating to call me as courtesy follow up as he did refer me to him and our business rely on referrals as well as advertisement. He received a quick call back from contracter as response and they spoke and then contracter called me and going to continue forward. All this within 45 minutes this morning, I am grateful that Reiki Master helped with this.
            Have a good morning.

          • Sandra,
            This is great news! I was just listening to some things on resiliency and one of the points the author makes is that people who learn to be resilient realize they have to rely on others at times for help. So, this is exactly what you did and why you are such an incredible woman who desires to grow. And you are growing. Great news. Let me know how this unfolds. Colleen

          • Thank you for sharing this, I too feel Blessed that Reiki Master said yes would do this to help me . This is the one individual here that will help where is able. It feels greatest when someone says yes i can help ,so Blessed. Thank you for connecting,and I will let you know how unfolds further.
            Have a great day.

          • Hello Colleen, you also have a wonderful weekend. I hope you are well. The last post seemed quiet, may you be well,and enjoy your weekend.
            Thank you for my multiple homework Bible readings and exploration of outlets for strong emotions. And looking forward to exploring so much more about myself too, acknowledging resilency,and deep within who I am.
            Thank you,
            May you have a weekend with moments of joy and inspiriation to refresh your heart and soul, kind of like that time you posted a friend had just offered a note that expressed exactly what you needed hear at that moment, and God sent her note to you just at that moment you needed to hear those very exact comforting words, If I recall your good friend quoted a verse from the Bible? in her note to you that was so what you were to hear that day,that moment in glorious way of God embracing you. May you have that special kind of moment(s) this weekend,Sandra

          • Hello Colleen, I will view the video interview today. Last evening I think I had so much information that became ungrounded ,and with call to Reiki Master ,he grounded me with the energy again, I think i simply became overwhelmed with so much awarenesses . I am going remain quiet and calm today .
            Thank you, I do look forward connecting with sharing thoughts of interview.

          • Hello Colleen, I wanted to share that I had some Bella Organics Gogi berry scrub and used on feet for massage in a little hot water foot bath /tub and once scrub dissolved most heavenly i found the same spots on feet that are ever so soothing right now….it was sensational! lol…I wanted to share as I know you shop Bella organics as well,and I just love the Gogi berry scrub, you can request samples too and they are ever so kind to mail along…very reasonable prices, just love their company and products. Another one if you had not been familiar is Natures Brands, look at body butter and the organic hand and body lotion, great products for soothing the soul.
            Last nite i forgot to mention that I was grounded by Reiki Master guidance with large oak tree in my yard to place hands on.and to be soft with hands upon tree bark as if rice paper/so delicate and need be soft and quiet with it….all interesting remedies,and I fell asleep with thoughts of Gratitude to God…I will connect with my thoughts so soon regarding video, I want to give it the attention of my whole self, today I will find that space to view and share..
            Thank you

          • Hello Colleen, I have had rough few days of finding within the encouragement and love .I looked through Bible last ntie for anger and it did not bring me to my feeling of anger but God angry in punishment? i think I recall that anyway…nothing that related to me….. I do feel very discouraged and yes, angry now and no care ,and I even began to see Jesus this morning,and I pushed Him away. I did. I said please leave and blocked Him out completely. I am not in a good place but I am feeling unwilling to continue what i call the yo yo cycle of giving all I have to be better,being ever so open and continuously I do not see it happening. I think I have given in on all right now. I sit here not sure why I am listening to Patsy Clairmont on her website, she has 32 videos ,a string of segments from her workshops and from her home at Christmas time, or on her front porch. Yes she is a great woman and defintitly happy. I related to something she has, agoraphobia and in those days she suffered she knew what anxiety pushed into corner felt like. I can relate to that .I had gotten better , but i relate with her deescription well.
            Hope you ahve a good weekend .

          • Sandra,
            I have briefly read your notes and am replying to them as I can. I so want to encourage you, to help you remember the path of healing has some huge rocks in it. It’s not straight or easy at times and what you are feeling is very expected. However, relating to Patsy…she offered so much wisdom in the interview, I can’t wait for you to see it. We will be airing it in February. She made some very good comments about the importance of using our minds to calm the fears and feelings that often paralyze use. She spent a lot of time reading like you do, and she kept her face in God’s word. As you are doing, she said the truth is what kept her grounded…though it was not easy or always simple, she has made it one step at a time….that’s all we can do dear friend. One little step at a time. You are on the right road, breathe and take in some sun if possible. I’ll reply to your other notes as well. Colleen

          • Hello Colleen, Thank you for encouragement. I so much look forward to seeing Patsy interview. sorry it is in February, but happy there is something like this interview coming as months will pass. I seem to have a block of heart at this time for days now. I walked into a Christian book store and i could not feel the energy,it felt removed and/or cold and icey around me and there was no warmth of usual experience. This i know I did, and I cannot seem to reverse it ,at least not within me of yet. I do look forwawrd to sunshine you mention, literal sun , we have had rain here.
            Thank you for thinking of me with your wonderful and encouraging thoughts..

          • Sandra,
            So I just sent a long note that may help with this. My thought is that you may not need to go to the Christian book store or force this…instead, ask your Lord Jesus to care for you as only He knows how to comfort and care. He made you, simply rest in that. You can’t force your feelings to just zip away and over time, this will not be so often. But for now, just go to our Lord and say I need help…I’m mad or angry or numb and I need you to show me the way….open my heart so I may live fully through you. That is my prayer for you today dear one. Colleen

        • Hello Colleen, wow, Septic company just left. i am still so relieved and miracle of miracles….man from company for 38 years said he had been out here in April (i purchased house 4/25 and asked in contract for septic letter,stating septic all good….i received a reciept stating line put in and warranty on parts and labor…this i found out was not the septic company so i was uncertain what occured here and with seller not being totally honest of bathroom issue etc, i needed call septic compnay to look,and glad i did for this man said first his compnay did septic and drainfield in April….as we spoke of reciept i had, he was confused as well as i and said let me see receipt….it turns out he called his compnay to inquire what happened thinking his company did job…it turns out he cleaned septic and gave quote to do drainfield,but owner/seller at time chose a plumber contracter for abbout 800.00 less to do drainfield, did not go with septic compnay for work on drainfield just septic cleaning…….and i found out septic compnay owner is grandparents of seller wife, very interesting day……) with all that concerns me and septic here I am entirely feeling BLESSED and Thanking Almighty God for keeping me beneath His wing/arm in protection as He has with this…..For when I called plumber when found out he was not septic company the other day he did not return my call, so I did not know what I had going on………now I can rest on Septic for this man from company cleaned it in april and said i am okay in drainfield, the plumber may have only 100 foot drain, and septic would have done 200 minimum but this man said i am good, I simply need divert all the water runoff from roof of house down slope for that is where my issue really is…too much water running down drainfield so once i get Gutters he said I will be okay,and he showed me exactly where to have spout come down and said to have a pipe under soil at opposite corner of house and off to different direction down other side of hill away from septic…and when that done,then have some soil delivered and even out some of land in drainfield…
          He said I do not need worry about this at septic at all. Colleen, I feel my anxiety truly got out of hand, I was so hugely frightened and I do hate that for me that i so overwhelmed ….I prayed to God yesterday during walk and all last nite for a miracle and wrote you my prayer….I so much believe God has protected me with this,so i can focus on the inside of my house to make a home now….that is where He does want me to focus …focus seems to have come to me this morning in way that popped into my head…this morning before septic man arrived, suddenly i began that anxious creating feeling before knowing anything to exactly be concerned with, so i caught it probably for one of the first times and I said no, i said to self in head that like a swimmer i will keep course and i can see an island/land ahead and my body imediately calmed to exact performance of i need breathing, arms light and not tense, mind clear and focused to stay afloat, i felt it all phsysiologically literally take over me, and it worked….That is amazing ,and most amazing part is I am afriad of water, i panick with water near face and cannot go under water ,etc……….I simply am calmed by visualization though ….what an intersting morning. And I am most of all Delighted to be able share with you a miracle of all miracles that I am okay with septic……What a Blessing this is. I did have to pay consulatition fee to septic compnay, man from company out here said instead of the 125.00 they asked him to receive , he said I will tell them i said 100.00 was okay, so I wrote him check for 100.00. I am satisfied for I needed to know what was situation at hand,so that is okay, so far better than a greater issue that could have been.
          Thank you for caring and being there.
          I will look forward to connecting with you again. I know there are many posts and I am so grateful for your patience and caring wisdom. So Grateful!
          Thank you,

        • Hi Colleen, I know there are multiple posts, I wanted to add that when i had the thought/guidance of swimmer focus and feeling of calm ,just before that when i said no to anxiety, I said i am going put that anxiety monster making process into the lake, take it away from me and put it in the murky water of bottom of lake where i take on direction of swimmer….that really worked this morning. I wanted to share, as it may work for someone else who suffers these episodes. I am realizing more and more my mind not useful , I wonder if becuase of one very specific trauma, i was so content and not as anxious at this young part of life, maybe 11 years old??? I do not remember. I only remember i was left home as my parents went out to Christmas shop ,it may have been a week before Christmas, I do not remember, I do remember the feeling of such content i was feeling as I took each ornament out of its box and chose its place on the tree I was left to decorate . I Love Christmas and I had tinsel ,etc, the door was always left unlocked in my family, and my brother in law appeared and he was “supposedly high on mariguana???” I do not know as it is not ever discussed. All I remember was going from being touched and inappropriately felt and some things flash back what happened after…and then all I remember clearly on other end is me upstairs,not sure how i got there,but sitting on side of bed in a completely different world, a world of isolation, i remember my sister coming in later as we shared bedroom and all i know is how I was never the same, i had a wall of brick and literally speechless, motion less, emotion less, i walked through the remainder of highschool disconnected and isolated within…Sorry, I wanted to say that for I have taken down that wall over the many years and had returned to feeling things, and opening up with Reiki most of the therapy along with Dr. over past 9 years, most purging had released …and now today some of creativity coming back too that ahs been off and on through these last 9 years….i know when someone knows that content peaceful place, and it all changes, the anxiety of creating monsters is very difficult to break cycle….yet I think I am on my way today forward in really working with God belieivng in His protection, and knowing He is always there, no matter what, and to switch the panick and feeling my world is going to drop from soemthing traumatic, see how I can endure and divert the brain to something of endurance and calm espeically during these what feels liek or triggers an espisode where i loose mind control.
          I appreciate your help and “endure” as in your thoughts to help me.
          I wanted to say I have not had a Christmas tree really since growing up in family. My x husband was not Christian, he did say I could have one but there was not a unit of the experience I desired to what this would be and create it to be so magically special to bring into a home. So this very year I so much want to bring a cut tree into my home, I want it to feel like the magical moment I so much had those years ago before everything changed for me…I want to feel the quiet ,peaceful content feeling with God right here with me ,and celebrate His Birth.
          I will intend to do this.
          Thank you for listening.

          • Sandra,
            My dear friend…I’m so sorry I have not been available in the last couple of days. I’m catching up and just read this….my heart breaks for you and is also totally amazed at the strength you have to recognize some core truths. You talk about your mind, name exactly what it was…TRAUMA….horrid, grievous, deep wounding, you recognize disassociation and how it has affected you through life, and you are not afraid to speak of it. Do you know how rare that is? Most with such grave abuse refuse to look at their symptoms much less call them out and bring them into the light. When we do that, the power of it all is taken…not the wounding, but the power of keeping your soul divided is overcome. Now there is mending in the process as you and I have been doing in our talking here and with your therapist and Reiki master….you are one resilient person. In addition, I’m saddened for the years you ‘lost’ feeling isolated, disconnected, and numb. It can be very common for those who endure such years of loss to grow into adults with what is called “narcissistic rage”; a sort of “I have a right to what I want and the world revolves around me because I’m making up for lost times”. I have never heard that in your voice; I hear broken sorrow, desire to grow, a longing to connect, a determination to overcome, commitment to be accountable, respect for others, tenderness towards the needs of others…all these are NOT part of self-focused, inward living. I’m sure your therapist has talked about grief work and allowing yourself to cry, to feel the sorrow for that little part of you, and to work through it lovingly. As you do, yes, the creative, playful, fun side will begin to grow and you will find more joy in life than you could have imagined. I just completed a book that spoke of being deeply wounded, like Christ being crucified…there was death. Yet because of the Holy Spirit, he was risen from the dead. In the book of Acts, the Lord is telling a few people that he is leaving but sending the Holy Spirit to fill them and strengthen them. And that same Holy Spirit that raised our Lord from the dead is the one who is alive and well in you; breathing life and hope into your spirit. So call to the Lord, ask that the Holy Spirit bring to life what was once dead; just watch with amazement at the light and life you are walking towards. It’s really amazing. This is such a tender note, I am honored with your honesty and vulnerability. For others who may read of your courage, this may bring them hope as well. What a wonderful thing that is. You are a dear soul Sandra, keep moving forward. Colleen

          • Hello Colleen, I hope you and your family are well. Thank you for this note. I know you have not read my other notes by this, my holding it feels had tightened , you will read. I thought I maybe had not heard for maybe my feeling being so forthright with really what was occuring within me and my response to shut down all maybe was offensive. I am glad it was not. Because I like you. I have felt this rage lately, not feeling like me at all, I have felt I do not know who i am anymroe. I did consult with my Dr., she has no cancellations,and I made an appt January with her next opening. I am still on the list if she does get any cancellations up to that time,and I will still keep this appt. She said like you that I “am in the process”, and that it is not simple solution to one issue, the important thing is that I am in the process…..and to keep Serenity prayer and taking care of myself as focus. I am not yet back to good space , I guess I will overcome as always have. I acknowledge all in note ,it all is so very painful, and how fragile my mind is. I know this too shall pass. Enjoy Autumns first days,
            Thank you for your note and thoughts so much wisdom and supportive encouragement always.

          • Hi Colleen, i read this again, and yet still do not have wisdom of how rare I am….I feel like a disappointment to life, to God, to myself really. It has been an increasingly challenging time for me.
            Thank you for your note. I will seek something creative even if it feels broken.

  6. Jolene,
    You put that so well…yes, He does allow us free will and yet also embraces us when we return. I think the love of our Lord is one of the most incredible gifts He gives to us. So unconditional, so consistent, and so kind. Thanks for the opportunity to share on this wonderful page. Colleen

  7. How heartening when God shows his presence in such a concrete way. To know he sees us veer off course, protects us while we wander, turns us in his direction, and not only forgives, but also kills the fatted calf when we come home. Thanks for adding this post to DifferentDream.com’s Tuesday link up.

  8. Sandra,
    Oh my gosh…you found THRIVE…it’s a fantastic little publication in the Dallas/Ft. Worth area. How cool! Yep, I was a single parent for several years then met my husband who had two of his own. So yep, together, its one big bunch! You are very kind to say such positive words, Sandra…thank you. They are not so deserved because God has a lot of work to do in my heart always but I will try to take them in….thank you! And yes, I love the passages you mention here…I Peter is one of my favorite books because it’s written to suffering people…and provides such fantastic perspective. And of course, Romans is wonderful….love Romans 8, also Romans 5:1-5. Paul’s words in Romans basically wrap up our theology. The man suffered so much yet look what God did through Paul’s life. Romans 7 is wonderful when we feel like ‘I can’t believe I just said or did that again’…comforting words of letting us all know we are not alone in this human, broken condition. And the last few chapters are so practical…as you can tell, I eat on those two books of truth all the time. Would love to know what you find interesting in them as well. About the address, our office is in Plano and the web page (www.insight.org) should have it listed. Due to the public nature of blogs, it’s best to send any material right to my office…they are fantastic about getting things to me very quickly. You are one dear soul! Thank you again, Colleen

    • OH NO Colleen, I just mailed it 430 to PO BOx 5000 in Frisno? I was enjoying your note tremendously as always, and the other two i need respond, but was going to eat dinner first and I read this note to end and how far is the PO box from Plano address…..oh my goodness, I am so sorry I did not confirm that. I think i found the address on insight for living.com….Let me know if you still will receive
      Thank you, and what a Blessing you are with these thoughts that i will come back to read through and respond.

      • Sandra, if you got it on the web site, I’m sure you did everything right! No worries…it will be here when The Lord wants it here no matter what. Thank you for your incredible kindness in sending it! I am so excited to read it! You bless my life, friend! Thanks again, Colleen

        • okay Colleen, The Lord knows I have full good intention and He will get it to you there…not sure how far each are Froesco from Plano? but it will be there you are good to remind me it is all God’s work that it will! I am happy to have shared this book with you, I truly think you are going to like it, and God knows you need receive this for I copied something very special from a calendar by Dayspring, those that have God’s word /passages. Believe it or not, I was at Christian book store picking up this book and what was placed on the counter by a woman customer beside me that she was purchasing but a Charles Swindoll daily devotional type desk calendar….I smiled . I know you will let me know when you do receive. I am glad you are happy to receive too. Many Blessings,
          Thank you for your kindness,

        • Hello Colleen, I went back to read the posts, Thank you so much for all the kind thoughts, I was always extremely creative in marketing,that was the creative side that comes and goes, more stays with me ,,,it was the artwork like watercolor that has been dorment for a very long while now. My intention is when truly settled here with furniture? that will be time for me to use a space to see if can bring back that calm painting creativity. I maintain the landscape gardening creativity too,and just being outdoors i do have this, I did not realize that is something that I could have been without, so that I am grateful. Like i said there was a time it was lost, but it came back like with Bella organics …i felt creative juices that i was happy to feel again for some time as powerful. I also wanted to say yes, it felt really relaxing, so calming to be provided Lenny the contracter yesterday for repair of this leak, it is already drying up. there is still rain coming end of week so although i trust it is completely reapired, i will have true test of that corrected. Thank you again for your thoughts and well wishes on all I have going on. I will rest on the Lord again as I have last two nites asked no bugs and there were not any, I will do same tonite and do same. I am concerned for this smoke bombing but it looks like best chance in ridding them,Lowes employee has allergies and asthma and said i will be okay to stay out all day and come back to open windows…contracter also said i will b ok…I will cover all in plastic and see if Saturday can do this, so i have a few days to prepare…Tomorrow i will for certain review the passages ,I look so much forward to reading and sharing thoughts with you. I really enjoyed this blog and passages from what i have read here.
          Thank you again

        • Hello Colleen, I looked at the receipt with regular mail delivery that book was sent to you, and it has an expected delivery date of 9/13…would it be wonderful to arrive early tomorrow 9/12 that maybe will get to you easily before weekend.
          I wanted to tell you that i awoke tearful this am. I had read 1 Peter last nite, at least from 1 Peter 1- 5. …I felt so validated that a challenge in life is a good thing to bring us closer to Jesus, so fascinating truly…….and then this am, not sure it took me some time to gather what felt like an imbalance of chemistry/sadness, i was feeling led to park where i walk to spend the time with the Lord as the park brings me so close to Him in a meditative sense with abundance of His beauty of nature all around, those vibes we spoke of really do connect me so well to hear Him….and i arrived before walk sat with Him in my car and drawn to the desk calendar i purchased the other day ,”Just a Moment With You, God”, by Kay Arthur, i opened to the favorite page, one of the first pages and sat with that for a while…….that is the one I mailed a copy to you! It is ever so beautiful and I cannot ruin a surprise so i will let you receive that one and read as receive….and then I turned back to a page I missed and would you imagine, it was 2 Peter 3:17-18 “These Are The Last Days”, “Therefore, beloved, knowing this beforehand, be on your guard so that you are not carried away by the error of unprincipled men and fall from your own steadfastness, but grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, To Him be the glory, both now and to the day of eternity. Amen. 2 Peter 3:17-18″”As you prepare for the coming year—-remember Jesus is coming. These are the last days—-difficult times are here….Therefore, beloved, knowing this beforehand, be on your guard.”.
          I found it interesting it is 1 Peter we had been discussing and I read last nite, here was more , this time 2 Peter…..at that given moment I felt so much better after feeling like this is what God has placed before me in this exact moment of feeling more vulnerable, I want to trust this male friend, alhtough I think there was a message in this for me,and the “unprincipled men”, the strong pull to bring me away from Jesus…that was how i felt this morning with this, it seemed so brilliantly clear coming to me it His timing of where and when I was to open this calendar and read this exact passage and to know sadness was from the uncertainty of this individual in exact timing passage was delivered…very wonderful GOd is.
          I wanted to share with you….
          I am going to go back and read more of 1 and 2 Peter…and as I walked today, I felt an epiphiny, it came to me from 1 Peter that we are to know the pain of Christ, He Died for our Sins was never as clear as today during my walk, and that we are to walk and know what that means…….To know truly now by experience what He died for were SINS of people, our Sins…..I cannot explain except taht it came to me as such an enlightenment and as that is what I am learning to know so well,and to feel what He died for….wow.
          I will read more and i will share my thoughts as I look forward to your wonderful wisdom /genuine thoughts.
          Have a good evening,
          Sandra PS I did have a question for you, with the neice wedding I am excluded by inviation, i have been ambivalnent as to go with my heart and send her Fireproof and something blue and someething used of my own , not knowing when wedding is but it is coming up, or remain silent? I keep asking what would Jesus do? and I was wondering if you can help me determine what to do with this, so I am not being taken for a fool? or not to think this way? be who I am ? to send this gift? it is unsettling feeling inside.Thank you ,Have a good evening there.

        • Hello Colleen, with the PS question I ask help with, Jesus seems to be wanting to protect me and I do not feel He wants me to mail anything but to be still…..that is what I believe I am hearing loud and clear. It is probably for He wants me to be giving to those who will appreciate my gesture? I would like to hear your thoughts, although this must be His answer for His reason ,I will please Him. This is very interesting to visualize His message to me here right now as I write this post….
          Thank you,

          • Sandra,
            This is exactly what I felt when I read the PS of your first note. It is their choice who to invite and not invite; and we can never know the reasons. While it is so easy to assume of jump to conclusions as to why you may not be invited, it is vital that you focus all your mind on the truth. That being, only The Lord knows what is in each person’s heart, it is our job to keep our own heart with all diligence, for all we know, The Lord may be protecting you from something that could hurt you if you went, and God’s at work in all our lives. Perhaps He will use the distance or you not being there in a way that eventually leads to someone contacting you in the future…we have no idea. So what we are to do is respect the boundaries of others, keep our hearts clean and pure, and offer kindness and His care when possible. That does not mean we allow ourselves to get run over; Christ never allowed others to run over him. But, he did let other’s do as they chose and then continually responded with truth and grace. It is a fine balance that He will lead you to and through as you walk with Him and stay in His word. That is a win-win for all. I think it’s great that you are willing to wait and hear God’s direction in all of this. It may be years before there is contact or who knows….but His ways are always right and good; even when we feel hurt, He is at work. Hope this helps my friend. Colleen

        • Hello Colleen, I hope you are well this morning, and that you will have a good weekend, maybe receive the package in mail too.
          I am sort of beside myself in what feels like if anything found wrong with septic leach field I just cannot take another issue here and was crying a bit. For a month the erosion over leach field by rain storms has increasingly especiall this week washed more soil away, i have Clemson Ag. and a water specialist from this free program to come out 25th. Last nite i wrote her an email to see if she could come out sooner to help in planning diversion of the rain water runoff from a few different areas. That is what the visit for 25th was intended. Now yesterday afternoon where i had been trying to fill some of the erosion with racking soil, this time out there i see a wet spot on soil. I thought a dog maybe urinated, as evening progressed I realize and by reading more online that this wet spot is sepage of water from system, is it excess water??? from the storm ,or block…I am truly not wanting any issue here. I have a call into someone to take look for me . I am awaiting call back to hopefully get someone out today to look. I feel cold from the anxiety of it. I mediated with breathing and helped for a bit. Tomorrow supposed to fog smoke out house 9am.
          This is all just too much really.
          I will keep you posted how all was today Please keep me in prayer with this issue here, I have asked the Lord to be gentle with me and this issue here , asking him to bring a miracle that nothing too serious and like the ceiling/roof leak, a contracter where affordable and repair 35.00. I need Trust at this point.
          I will keep you posted today

          • Oh Sandra,
            I am so incredibly sorry for all of this. I can’t believe it…just as one thing gets cleared up, another shows up…and these are difficult house issues, not simple ones. All I can say is that it’s hard and you have every reason to feel discouraged. I’m so sorry. I hope they reply quickly and this can be fixed up much sooner than the other situations have been. Thanks for letting me know; I’m going to pray you will find hope soon. Colleen

        • Hello Colleen, I have to say I have been crying all morning now. I am waiting for someone to call me back with septic/leach field to check furhter. I am overwhelmed as I so much am seeking better life and I guess still not time. ALot of good things,yet still just stuff feel like set me back in direction. I came across this and now I have been sobbing watching, this is TREMENDOUS Little boy, maybe that you have seen before on video.He is such a gift to see and hear!!!! wow. WHat a truly beautiful heart and soul clearly. And one of my favorite songs, you will enjoy tremenously too for he is autistic and blind and had a rough start to come to life and being. I am so grateful not even knowing him, although to his uncle and aunt.


          Best wishes for a peaceful day,


  9. Hello Colleen, I am so touched by your blog here. It was before me this morning,and it simply popped up again…like the text you received ,a comfort in the silence and living/life challenges was the text simply appearing….here is this blog. and as we have spoken so much of expectations…..and Let go Let God , I found these passages so helpful to read today. 1 Peter 1:6, 7 particularly penetrates and soothes my very soul today…..there is hope.
    Thank you for your ever so ever so humble tremendously kind and precious heart and soul that helps so many.

    For Justice: Lamentations 3:59
    Exodus 14:14
    1 Peter 1:6, 7
    Romans 8:38 (most of all need write this one day for the long nites i experience at times, and just anytime that I can be reminded!!!How Powerful He is)

  10. Hello Colleen, I tried to post from reply post by email and it came up that page was not found? I came on this post/blog, I will read this blog as looks wonderful. I have to say that you truly amaze me, you are so entirely gifted, really brilliant and filled with wisdom and of complete God Heart and Soul……and you have a beautiful family
    I was online last nite looking for address, i believe it is Frisco not the Plano address by you there? When looking online for this address I came across the most beautiful and loving family article, it was you and your family! I was not aware you have 5 children! I was so happy to see this and I admire even more how you transitioned into being truly who you are through some challenging times, and writing multiple books and being an amazing grace for so many people at Special Needs Ministry and extended I further in other places in and around you. Thank you for being such an amazing Grace. An inspiration to and for me to know and so mnay others. With genuine Gratitude and delighted to know you and be a friend to share life journey,and sharing in the word of God and the Love of Jesus Christ.

    Sandra, I love the 1 Peter 1 6,7 and ROmans 8:38, fell in my lap here to be in front of me to read and has made my day so much brighter to read these so far! I will go back and read this blog from beginning!Thank you !


  11. Vicki,
    You have amazing timing! I just listened to a podcast on the care and keeping of one’s heart; then read your note of welcoming a peaceful and happy attitude….I’m still learning that stress is often a choice. Our circumstances may not be what we would choose, but how we respond to them is always our choice; a discipline the Lord is reminding me of often these days. The passages are for us all, aren’t they! I need the reminder to stop and reset my focus as much as the rest of us; you are not alone in that journey. Thanks so much for being a consistent friend here and offering such great thoughts! Thank you for your prayers; we’re in this thing called life as a community and you will remain in my prayers as well. So great to hear from you today! I would love to hear how the Lord is working in your soul as you make time to hear His tender, loving voice. As a dear friend of mine says…to be continued…. = ) Colleen

  12. Colleen,
    This is such a important reminder that I need today. Life is always full of challenges and surprises and when things are quiet and calm for a minute that is when I need to be reminded to still be focused completely on God. I will definitely be meditating on these passages and I look forward to see how the LORD works this week. I would welcome a peaceful and happy attitude instead always feeling stressed out and ready to break.
    I’ll be keeping you and your family in my prayers.

  13. I think perseverance works only because we choose to take each day’s blahs and Ahs! to Christ and allow Him to shoulder the burdens with us. Before we know it, we have traveled a long, long way. God has brought us far. He will take us far—day by day.

    • Wayne,
      I LOVE what you said… “each day’s blahs and Ahs”… how much of life fits into those two spaces. As my dad has said so often, most of life is about just showing up! As we do, He does carry us through the spaces and seasons, hills and valleys, and we look back and think it was all because of His faithfulness indeed! He is so good, so faithful, and so strong. It’s great to hear from you again. I love your blogs as well!!! Have a great week. Colleen

  14. thank you. this especially spoke to me today as we received a few more diagnoses yesterday. a part of me wants to run around and check off all the things the doctor said to do, but I know I am supposed to just file it away and wait upon the Lord for a little bit before going into the supermom frenzy. I feel God has been shouting this lectio divina thing to me from all places, church, husband, books (Kathleen Boduc’s book), and now your blog! This is a powerful post. Thank you for writing it to all of us. “Sweet daughter, let Me lead you today.”

    • Cat,
      I can’t believe it….more and more diagnoses…I am so very sorry. How I understand the immediate response to turn into “supermom”…or at least try to do so much before slowing to pray and listen. It is such an incredibly difficult balance…when to move, when to be still. So much wisdom is needed for us all in that. Your closing words… “Sweet daughter, let Me lead you today”…struck me deeply. I was reading along, feeling for you in your situation, then those tender words just shot to my heart. Thank you, thank you. I need these reminders as much as anyone else! How we need to let Him lead us! So true. I pray the Lord provides you with His peace as you move forward with all that is on your plate. For whatever reason, He has allowed it and His plan is good…not easy, but good. I pray your heart finds comfort in that today. So good to connect with you here my sweet friend! Colleen

      • It is for such a time as this that the Father put us together as “virtual” friends 🙂 thanks Colleen. I am doing OK. I am grateful for the strengths and abilities God has given my child. I WANTED these diagnoses – to help define what he needs better. SO I am trying to grieve but also rejoice that there are more answers to really help him get to the next step. I am trying to see these as a ladder to help us rather than a crushing blow. hugs thank you for your encouragement in the midst of your own struggles. it means so much to me.

        • Cat,
          I so understand that….the diagnoses help us learn and reach out for more help for our kids. So yes, there is a sense of peace that comes even though there is grief in it as well. Your perspective is amazing….I struggled with a lot of anger as Jon’s diagnoses increased at first. The Lord and I had some pretty hard talks, and sometimes we still do; but he remains faithful to stay with me….with us all and hold us close. How does anyone live without Jesus? Finally, I fully respect the desire to keep his diagnoses private; but know if there is anything I can do to help you find resources or support, I am more than happy to do that. Whatever is comfortable for you, I’m here to help. May the Lord guide you in all wisdom, understanding, and grace today and as you move forward. Thanks again for your wonderful comments! Colleen

    • Barb,
      Of all the people I know who have constant stress and handle it well, you top the list! You have so much on your plate…always. Your words mean so much….thank you my friend. Praying always for your family, your heart, your life, and God’s provision over your home! Thanks for your sweet comment! Have a great afternoon! Colleen